It’s week two of preseason, and the Leafs are about to hit the ice for real. Okay, semi-real. The first preseason game is this week in St. John’s, and the Leafs come back home after to finish up training camp and the preseason game schedule.
Monday, September 16: We learned on the weekend that the deadline for the NHLPA to opt out of the CBA is today.
Read this thread if you want the lowdown:
You don’t want to talk about NHL labor issues. Neither do I. But talk about them, we must. Because today is a vitally important day that could be the difference between a possible work stoppage in one year or labor peace for at least three more years and possibly 6 or 7.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) September 16, 2019
Tuesday, September 17: The Leafs face the Senators in St. John’s. The game is on at 5:30 p.m. Toronto time, and will feature some hockey players dressed as the Maple Leafs and the Senators. Who those players will be is a good question. You may recall that last year, when the Leafs opened the preseason in Lucan, John Tavares made his debut for the fans there. Expect the Leafs to put someone exciting into the lineup for the fans in Newfoundland to see, but don’t expect the whole team to play.
The rest of the players not participating in that game will likely depart for Toronto on this day since there is another preseason game on Wednesday.
Meanwhile there’s other drama brewing in Newfoundland:
Growlers to stage news conference Tuesday; Mile One lease negotiations expected to be key topic | The Telegram https://t.co/hq1rpGlMek— Robin Short (@telyrobinshort) September 14, 2019
Mile One is the arena where the Leafs and Senators with faceoff a few hours later. The timing can’t be a coincidence, and this seems like pressure being applied.
Wednesday, September 18: Maple Leafs face the Ottawa Senators again, this time in Ottawa and at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, September 19: Nothing official scheduled for this day.
Friday, September 20: The Maple Leafs host the Buffalo Sabres at home. This game is on Sportsnet One and is on at 7:00 p.m.
Today marks the first day players can be placed on waivers to be formally loaned to the minors. Teams have until October 1 to get their roster down to 23 men who all fit under the salary cap. We’ll have something indepth on waivers, and the challenges the Leafs face this year in cutting their roster.
Saturday, September 21: Preseason action continues with the second home-and-home as the Leafs travel to Buffalo to face the Sabres again.
Sunday, September 22: This is likely to be the very last quiet, no-news Sunday where nothing much happens. The Leafs (or some of them, at least) have to travel for Monday’s game in Montréal.