New York Rangers @ Toronto Maple Leafs
07:00 PM at Scotiabank Arena
Watch on: MSG, TSN4
The Leafs last played on Saturday, made Penguin pancakes and won 7-0. Their record is 16-6-6.
The Rangers last played on Saturday where they beat Boston 2-1 in overtime. Their record is 21-7-1.
The Leafs just played the Rangers a week ago, and scored seven goals that time too. Since then the "best team in the east" has won over the Ducks and got the win against the Bruins.
Are they just some goalies and a bad team? No, that's actually the Coyotes, but we'll forget about them until Auston gets his free trip home in February. The Rangers get a lot of their points from the goalie, but they also have some mild ability to control play and generate positive offence without too much negativity defensively. They're mediocre, not bad. And a mediocre team with hot goalies can win a lot of games.
Vince Mercogliano via Daily Faceoff from yesterday.
Chris Kreider - Mika Zibanejad - Blake Wheeler
Artemi Panarin - Vincent Trocheck - Alexis Lafrenière
Will Cuylle - Nick Bonino - Jonny Brodzinski
Jimmy Vesey - Barclay Goodrow - Tyler Pitlick
Ryan Lindgren - Adam Fox
K'Andre Miller - Jacob Trouba
Erik Gustafsson - Braden Schneider
The Leafs are passing a virus around and taking turns spending a couple of days with digestive woes.
If TJ Brodie is well enough he'll play, if not, Simon Benoit will draw in and the pairs will get rearranged.
Matthew Knies - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Tyler Bertuzzi - John Tavares - Mitch Marner
Nicholas Robertson - Max Domi - Calle Järnkrok
Bobby McMann - David Kämpf - Noah Gregor
Morgan Rielly - TJ Brodie
Jake McCabe - Timothy Liljegren
William Lagesson - Conor Timmins
Martin Jones - starter
The Leafs are a month early on entering the grind portion of the season. A combination of illness, flakey play, injuries and the tight division means January comes early. There's no holiday, no let up, just play each game like you're rolling the Penguins, not like you forgot why you're there.
The team has been very slightly better in the last 30 days relative to the first 16 games of the season. Very slightly. They need to keep driving for more and forget the standings. The worst people to get fooled by flattering points totals is the players themselves.
Expect to see JT and AT (Jace and Axton Tavares) on the ice tonight as the other JT gets to celebrate his 1,000th point at home.