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FTB: Maple Leafs face the best of the NHL tonight on their home turf

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The Leafs are on a Florida road trip and start by facing the Lightning tonight.

Wendel Clark

The Maple Leafs are in Florida today, which on one hand must be nice since the weather here in Toronto is heading to full on winter mode with temperatures of -20°C expected on the weekend.

On the other hand, it’s not going to be fun and games to play the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight. They are currently the NHL’s best, and not by the slim margin of one single win which separates about ten teams in the Western Conference.

The Lightning are dominant. This is a huge test for the Leafs tonight. If you envision the Leafs getting through multiple rounds of the playoffs, they will have to do that by passing Tampa. A win there tonight would be a league wide statement that they are the real deal.

ICYMI

Here’s what we wrote about yesterday.

Maple Leafs 5-Game Process: January Slump Edition - Katya
Is this a slump? And if so, who’s driving it?

Leafs move Liljegren from the Marlies to the Growlers - Elseldo
Timothy Liljegren was sent on a conditioning stint to Maine of all places.

Women’s Hockey Links: Boston Bruins, Pride form NHL-NWHL partnership - Nafio and Annie
It sounds good, but what does it mean for the league?

Other News

Ullmark goes on an adventure and almost regrets it.

What are the Flames even doing here?

Ducks Acquire Kloos from the Wild for Aberg - Anaheim Calling
Pontus Aberg had been scratched for the last four games. Justin Kloos has thirty points in thirty four games for the Iowa Wild.

Ducks acquire Del Zotto from Vancouver; Grant from Pittsburgh - Anaheim Calling
Ducks make two back-to-back trades in less than 30 minutes.

[SPECIES: I’m sure Del Zotto is happy to have been traded to the porn star capital of America]

John Scott thankful to be alive after falling through ice on lake - Second City Hockey
John Scott estimated he was submerged for about a minute.

Report: Beaulieu has requested a trade - Die By The Blade
According to reports, Nathan Beaulieu has a requested a trade from the Sabres. He's a former first round pick!