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Preview: Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Los Angeles Kings

It’s the King vs the Kings

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Los Angeles Kings
The real King
Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Kings @ Toronto Maple Leafs
07:00 PM at Scotiabank Arena
Watch on: TVAS, TSN4, BSW

Opponent’s Site: Jewels From The Crown

The Leafs last game was an away game on December 6 against the Dallas Stars, which Toronto won by a score of 4-0. The Leafs have a record of 16-5-6 so far.

The Los Angeles Kings last played an away game on December 6 against the Ottawa Senators. The Kings won by a score of 5-2, and their current league record is 14-10-4.

Them

The Kings last squared off against our beloved Leafs on October 29th, with the California squad taking the victory. That was true about all of the games against California squads. Both teams were playing around .500 hockey when the Kings took the 4-2 win.

The Kings pulled together a four win streak earlier in November, but over the last ten have picked up 11 pts, going 4-3-3. Not great, not terrible.

Overall though, the Kings are 11th in the League at 51.97% CF% and 9th in xGF% at 53.09%. The offense is there and they are getting contributions through their lineup, but their .903% team save percentage won’t help them win many games.

Luckily the team has been healthy for the better part of this year and is under the salary cap despite still paying Mike Richards and Dion Phaneuf this season as well as playing a $5,000,000 contracted goalie in the minors. If they can find a way to get some stops, they should be a pretty decent team.

Lines

Source: Last Game: (12/06) via Daily Faceoff

Kevin Fiala - Anze Kopitar - Arthur Kaliyev
Trevor Moore - Phillip Danault - Viktor Arvidsson
Alex Iafallo - Gabriel Vilardi - Adrian Kempe
Jaret Anderson-Dolan - Blake Lizotte - Carl Grundstrom

Mikey Anderson - Drew Doughty
Sean Durzi - Matt Roy
Alexander Edler - Sean Walker

Jonathan Quick*
Pheonix Copley

Us

This made me chuckle.

The replies share the rest of the team. And that should be all the new information you need to know about us. Oh, and TJ Brodie is going to play alongside Timmins. Welcome back and stay safe. Please.

Lines

Michael Bunting - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Nick Robertson - John Tavares - Mitch Marner
Alex Kerfoot - David Kämpf - Pierre Engvall
Zach Aston-Reese - Pontus Holmberg - Denis Malgin

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

Ilya Samsonov
Matt Murray

The Game

Toronto vs Los Angeles

Toronto Stat Los Angeles
Toronto Stat Los Angeles
70.4 - 3rd Points % - Ranking 57.1 - 13th
3.074 - 21st Goals/Game - Ranking 3.429 - 10th
2.444 - 3rd Goals Against/Game - Ranking 3.536 - 23rd
23.3 - 14th Power Play% - Ranking 26.0 - 8th
80.0 - 10th Penalty Kill% - Ranking 72.0 - 26th
10 - 17th Team Sh% - Ranking 10.6 - 10th
0.917 - 3rd Team Sv% - Ranking 0.880 - 32nd
William Nylander - 14 Most Goals (NST) Gabriel Vilardi - 13
Mitchell Marner - 32 Most Points (NST) Kevin Fiala - 30
Michael Bunting - 36 Most PIM (NST) Brendan Lemieux - 28
Morgan Rielly - 23 TOI Leader (NST) Drew Doughty - 26.35

Timmins just feels like a fun name. Or maybe that it needs “Officer” in front of it. Hopefully the veteran of the rearguard Brodie keeps him calm. I’m curious to see how the duo fair from a health perspective as well as potential pair option.

The Leafs were 9-0-3 without Brodie, but I really don’t think that is commentary on Brodie. More so the team finally shaking some rust off and getting rolling. Now with folks coming back off of injury, the Leafs can start truly staking their claim to this season.

I expect Auston Matthews to do something special tonight to help that cause. He is the King after all. Especially with eyebrows going up around the league with the night Tage Thompson had. Maybe my gut is acting funny from the kimchi, but that is what I see highlighting a good team performance to continue the progress moving in the right direction.

It starts with a big win tonight. After a big night in Dallas, I’d like to see them take another step and build some thorough and convincing wins up into the holiday season. This month has a beautiful schedule and mix of quality and sub-standard teams. It is the perfect time to start chipping away at the “Play to the Level of the Competition” narrative and start fresh.

Cheers!