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FTB: The Maple Leafs head to Montreal for a late game

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What? The game doesn’t start until 8:00 p.m. tonight?

Toronto Maple Leafs v Winnipeg Jets Photo by Darcy Finley/NHLI via Getty Images

The Maple Leafs have a game tonight! It’s been a little while since they’ve had three whole days between games after going through a period earlier this month playing every other day. Tonight they head to Montreal, well rested and ready to play the Canadiens who only narrowly avoided a playoffs-odds disaster on Monday by beating by the Flames 2-1.

The stakes aren’t quite as high tonight for the Habs, but a convincing win by the Leafs would again dent their chances to make the playoffs, and also reassure all of us Leafs fans that they can be easily beaten, which is important because if they do make it in the first round match-ups in the division will probably be Toronto vs. Montreal, and Edmonton vs. Winnipeg.

One thing we know is that our lovable and grarty Rasmus Sandin will be playing!

Sandin given ‘more runway’ to prove he's playoff ready - TSN
"We expect he'll play most, if not all, the [eight] games remaining in the regular season."

Sandin was practising in the defenceman slot on the second power play unit yesterday, perhaps as a sign of an expanded role for him in the near future. And I highly agree with such a move!

Also, tonight’s game is an odd-ball 8:00 p.m. ET start, so maybe schedule a nap before dinner. Why they are starting at 8:00 p.m. is beyond me, but, it probably has to do with this game being rescheduled and the availability of NHL staff in the War Room to watch only so many games at one time. This is probably why the Canucks are playing the Senators in Ottawa at the even more unusual start time of 5:30.

We’ll have our preview if tonight’s game out around noon after the Leafs’ morning skate is complete.

Other News

The IIHF Men’s Under-18 World Championship is in progress down in Texas of all places. Team Canada easily defeated Team Sweden last night with a final score of ∞-1. We have collectively decided we want the Leafs to draft Logan Stankoven, whom you may recall was on Brigs’ watch list earlier this month. The kid can pass!

And he can score!

Meanwhile in the NHL; Zdeno Chara fighting Matt Martin? I think you can guess who wins this one. Matt, don’t pick a fight with a guy who can punch you from three feet away.

The Leafs one time future captain was gooning it up last night.

How did Pavel Bure get on to the Canucks? Being able to read game sheets in Cyrillic helped a lot.

McDavid Is Going To Hit 100 Points This Year - The Copper & Blue
Four point night versus Jets on Monday leaves 19 points to go in 10 games. [SPECIES: too bad the Oilers will be knocked out in the first round.]

Source: NHL border issue may last into playoffs - ESPN
The NHL continues to work on a solution to the United States-Canada border issue related to COVID-19 as the playoffs approach.

NHL-Turner deal official, with Cup Final on TNT - Sports Media Watch
Turner Sports is a surprise dark horse to win the "B Package" for the the NHL's US national broadcast rights. TNT will have the Stanley Cup Final in 2023, 2025 and 2027. ABC/ESPN has the rights to the championship series in 2022, 2024, 2026 and 2028. The deal, worth $225 million annually, ends the NHL's 16-year relationship with NBC Sports.

This 11-year-old can now play minor hockey thanks to an engineer’s keen eye for design - CBC
Cerebral palsy meant that Carter Burton could not wear a hockey glove on his left hand — that is, until now.