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Preview: Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Calgary Flames

Nazem Kadri returns to Toronto

Minnesota Wild v Calgary Flames Photo by Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images

Calgary Flames @ Toronto Maple Leafs
07:00 PM at Scotiabank Arena
Watch on: CBC, SNO, SNW, SNP

Opponent’s Site: Matchsticks and Gasoline

The Leafs last game was at home on December 8 against the Los Angeles Kings, which Toronto won by a score of 5-0. The Leafs have a record of 17-5-6 so far.

The Calgary Flames last played an away game on December 9 against the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Flames lost by a score of 3-1, and their current league record is 13-11-3.

Them

Good-bye Matthew Tkachuk. Good-bye Johnny Gaudreau. Good-bye Sean Monahan.

Hello Jonathan Huberdeau. The big return from the Tkachuk exodus!

He has been adjusting a little slow it would seem, posting 16 points in 24 games thus far this year. Ok, that isn’t so bad though. I bet Tkachuk is suffering a similarly slow start....

Ok, maybe not, but for sure Columbus is no place for an individual to have success...

At least Monahan...

Fret not Flames fan. Enter:

Nazem Kadri. I miss the excitement of his x-factor or moxie (pop, jam, “it” factor). He has always been a fun personality for me in the sport. He seems to have an infectious positivity and always seems to have a good time. I’m glad he has found success in his career.

And if someone rubs him into the wall tonight or give him a good ole fashion leather face wash, I think that is as good a way as any to greet an old friend.

He has had an ok start to the season, but I’d expect him to have a good game tonight. Because that is what Toronto boys do.

Also keep an eye on Adam Ružička. He’s big and has been crushing it at 5v5 this year. His 12 points at even is tied for first on the team. He’s play 17 games to Mikael Backlund’s 27.

I haven’t watched them play, but I’m exciting to get a good look at the remodeled Flames.

Lines

Source: Wes Gilbertson via Daily Faceoff prior to yesterday’s game

Jonathan Huberdeau - Elias Lindholm - Tyler Toffoli
Dillon Dube - Nazem Kadri - Andrew Mangiapane
Adam Ruzicka - Mikael Backlund - Blake Coleman
Milan Lucic - Trevor Lewis - Radim Zohorna

Noah Hanifin - Rasmus Andersson
MacKenzie Weegar - Chris Tanev
Nikita Zadorov - Michael Stone

Dan Vladar*
Jacob Markstrom

* - Starter

Us

How does this team get hotter? Bring the Flames to town of course. Gee I crack myself up.

I’m not really sure what else to say here. Gio and Brodie get to play against their old team?

This Leafs team has looked good. They are playing a solid game these days and seem to have taken note on the whole less mistake hockey. It’s nice.

*Update*

I wonder if he likes going by Joey.

Lines

Michael Bunting - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Denis Malgin - John Tavares - Mitch Marner
Alex Kerfoot - David Kämpf - Joey Anderson
Zach Aston-Reese - Pontus Holmberg - Wayne Simmonds

Mark Giordano - Justin Holl
Rasmus Sandin - Timothy Liljegren
TJ Brodie - Conor Timmins

Matt Murray*
Ilya Samsonov

* - Starter

The Game

Toronto vs Calgary

Toronto Stat Calgary
Toronto Stat Calgary
71.4 - 3rd Points % - Ranking 53.7 - 21st
3.143 - 15th Goals/Game - Ranking 3 - 22nd
2.357 - 3rd Goals Against/Game - Ranking 3 - 12th
23.6 - 13th Power Play% - Ranking 19.8 - 25th
80.4 - 10th Penalty Kill% - Ranking 82.0 - 5th
10.1 - 17th Team Sh% - Ranking 8.8 - 28th
0.920 - 3rd Team Sv% - Ranking 0.893 - 23rd
William Nylander - 15 Most Goals (NST) Nazem Kadri, Tyler Toffoli - 10
Mitchell Marner - 33 Most Points (NST) Elias Lindholm - 22
Michael Bunting - 36 Most PIM (NST) Nikita Zadorov - 31
Morgan Rielly - 23 TOI Leader (NST) Rasmus Andersson - 24.41

The Flames has won three in a row before visiting good pal Johnny in Columbus last night. I wouldn’t be surprised if they get rolling the back half of the year.

As I mentioned before I’m curious to see this variation of the Flames. I think they have an interesting mix that should bring a game that can give the Leafs trouble. And in that vein I’m curious to see the big boys continue to Roll.

Mitch Marner goes for 22. Rugged Adam Ružička rides a 22.22SH%. Game on; let’s go.