Colorado Avalanche @ Toronto Maple Leafs
07:00 PM at Scotiabank Arena
Watch on: ALT, SN, NHLN
The Leafs last game was away on January 11 against the New York Islanders, which Toronto lost by a score of 4-3 in overtime. The Leafs have a record of 21-10-8 for a 0.641 Points %.
The Colorado Avalanche last played at home on January 10 against the Vegas Golden Knights. The Avalanche won by a score of 3-0 in regulation, and their current league record is 27-12-3 for a 0.679 Points %.
The Avalanche are obviously a very good team, but they have some injuries, and like a growing list of NHL teams, some concern about goaltending.
Artturi Lehkonen is on this road trip, but not expected to play tonight. Also out is Bowen Byram, who has missed a week of play. Miles Wood has the 'flu, and did not play the last game. Defender Josh Manson did not play in the last game as a game-time decision.
Some of these players may be back tonight. At the moment, the Avs have a very weak defence below the top pair. But when that's your top pair, you don't worry too much.
Alexandar Georgiev has played in 35 games, the most of any goalie in the NHL, and he's started every game since mid-December. He's been good, but not great.
The Avs play an excellent possession game, but they pull back on the quality of their offence a bit. They are the team most like the Hurricanes in terms of using shots from the defence, the points and from the middle of the ice instead of net-front scrums. Their defence, particularly in the high danger areas is excellent.
They have a mediocre power play by Expected Goals, but they've been scoring just a touch over expected, and end up as good. Their Save % shorthanded is better than the Leafs, but still mediocre.
The Avs get it done with their top-six and top-pair and the rest of the team is just there to give them rest breaks. Nathan MacKinnon has 10 more points than William Nylander, and Mikko Rantanen is also in the NHL's top 10.
Last Game (01/08) via Daily Faceoff
Jonathan Drouin - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Valeri Nichushkin - Ross Colton - Logan O'Connor
Andrew Cogliano - Ryan Johansen - Joel Kiviranta
Kurtis MacDermid - Fredrik Olofsson - Jason Polin
Devon Toews - Cale Makar
Jack Johnson - Samuel Girard
Caleb Jones - Sam Malinski
Alexandar Georgiev - overwhelmingly likely starter
Play time is over. That was clear halfway through the Islanders game when the Leafs were still just a little bit on San Jose Sharks time.
There are no easy games coming up on the schedule, and even the lower ranked teams are those particularly inclined to want to kick Leafs ass. The Avalanche are not lower-ranked.
The Leafs will go with an unchanged lineup from the last game.
Matthew Knies - Auston Matthews - Mitch Marner
Tyler Bertuzzi - John Tavares - William Nylander
Pontus Holmberg - Max Domi - Calle Järnkrok
Bobby McMann - David Kämpf - Noah Gregor
Morgan Rielly - T.J. Brodie
Simon Benoit - Jake McCabe
Mark Giordano - Timothy Liljegren
Martin Jones - starter
This game is not the main HNIC game, so it is not on CBC. CityTV is carrying the Jets game, so it's not there either.
Paul Bissonette is apparently on the panel tonight, so tune in or mute quickly as per your own tastes.
Tonight is also the Indigenous Heritage Game: