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Red Wings at Maple Leafs: Preview and Game Chat

Justin Holl is a healthy scratch.

Detroit Red Wings v Toronto Maple Leafs
TORONTO, ON - DECEMBER 21: Brendan Perlini #29 of the Detroit Red Wings battles against Dmytro Timashov #41 of the Toronto Maple Leafs during an NHL game at Scotiabank Arena on December 21, 2019 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Maple Leafs defeated the Red Wings 4-1.
Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

Detroit Red Wings @ Toronto Maple Leafs: Game #9

7:00 pm at Scotiabank Arena
TV/Streaming: CBC
Opponent’s Site: Winging it in Motown

Justin Holl is in Sheldon Keefe’s doghouse as the Leafs get set to host the Red Wings on Saturday night. The 29-year-old defenseman is a healthy scratch in place of Timothy Liljegren, with Travis Dermott moving up to play with Morgan Rielly against the rebuilding Red Wings. The result of this means Jake Muzzin and TJ Brodie are being paired together, likely in an attempt to get Jake Muzzin back in the right direction because the 32-year-old been quite, uhh, worrying so far.

One of the benefits of having a capable top-six defenseman in Liljegren in the lineup is that Keefe doesn’t feel any pressure to bring someone like Holl back into the lineup after just one game.

Forwards

Michael Bunting - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Alex Kerfoot - John Tavares - Mitchell Marner
Pierre Engvall - David Kämpf - Ondřej Kaše
Nick Ritchie - Jason Spezza - Wayne Simmonds

Defense

Morgan Rielly - Travis Dermott
Jake Muzzin - TJ Brodie
Rasmus Sandin - Timothy Liljegren

Goalies

Petr Mrázek
Jack Campbell

There are no changes to the forwards, but Michael Amadio did get waived and claimed by the Vegas Golden Knights this afternoon so the Leafs are just running with 12 forward. I wouldn’t be surprised if Kirill Semyonov gets called up as the next man up from the Marlies. Either that, or the Canadiens waive Adam Brooks and we bring our mediocre boy back home.

Also, Rasmus Sandin’s father Patric is going to be in attendance tonight, likely here to watch Sweden’s Lucas Raymond.

The Red Wings

Speaking of the opponent, they lost 3-2 in overtime to the division-leading Florida Panthers. They had this chaotic/admirable shift in the third period just before they tied the game. Keefe apparently showed the Leafs this clip, I assume pointing to Adam Erne and Pius Suter diving all over the ice to block shots. However, the players probably just saw four failed zone exits in a row and nodded their heads accordingly.

Here is the Red Wings lineup, Thomas Greiss is going to start on the second half of a back-to-back.

Forwards

Filip Zadina - Dylan Larkin - Lucas Raymond
Robby Fabbri - Pius Suter - Joe Veleno
Vladislav Namestnikov - Michael Rasmussen - Givani Smith
Sam Gagner - Mitchell Stephens - Carter Rowney

Defense

Danny DeKeyser - Moritz Seider
Nick Leddy - Filip Hronek
Marc Staal - Troy Stecher

Goalies

Thomas Greiss
Alex Nedeljkovic

So, can a rested Leafs playing against a young, hard working team on the second half of a back to back overcome not having to play Justin Holl on defense? I guess we’ll see.