The Toronto Maple Leafs won their sixth game in a row last night when they defeated the New Jersey Devils in overtime. I had no idea that they were on such a roll. I suppose the beginning of the season damped my spirits a bit, and the craziness of the past couple weeks pushed any kind of critical thinking out of my mind,
The Maple Leafs look to extend the winning streak to seven games tonight, but first they’ll have to face off against noted Leafs killer Alexander Georgiev in net and the explosive firepower of New York Rangers forward Greg McKegg.
Toronto Maple Leafs at New York Rangers
7:00PM - CBC, Sportsnet, NHL Network, MSG+, NHL.tv
Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York County, New York State
SBN Opponents: Blueshirt Banter
The good news from last night was the Maple Leafs beating the Devils in overtime last night, scoring the winner with the help of Devils defender Damon Severson. The horrible news was that the Maple Leafs have lost rookie forward Ilya Mikheyev for what looks like the remainder of the regular season.
With Mikheyev out, the Leafs will have to slot someone new into his spot or re-arrange some lines. Forward Adam Brooks was recalled yesterday and with the team coming back to Toronto for tonight’s game, Brooks may get to make his NHL debut in Toronto on the biggest stage in the NHL.
Toronto Maple Leafs Lines (from last night)
Ilya Mikheyev - John Tavares - William Nylander
Zach Hyman - Auston Matthews - Mitchell Marner
Pierre Engvall - Alexander Kerfoot - Kasperi Kapanen
Dmytro Timashov - Frederik Gauthier - Jason Spezza
Morgan Rielly - Tyson Barrie
Jake Muzzin - Justin Holl
Travis Dermott - Cody Ceci
Who’s replacing Mikheyev? We don’t know right now what Sheldon Keefe is thinking, hopefully we’ll get some pre-game notice. If I were to make a guess, I’d bump Engvall up to the first line in Mikheyev’s spot, move Timashov up to line three and then put Adam Brooks on the new “all centre” fourth line.
New York Rangers Lines
The Rangers have lost a player of their own, with Brendan Lemieux breaking his hand last night in the Rangers game last night against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Pavel Buchnevich - Mika Zibanejad - Kaapo Kakko
Artemi Panarin - Ryan Strome - Filip Chytil
Greg McKegg - Lias Andersson - Chris Kreider
Brendan Lemieux - Brett Howden - Jesper Fast
Jacob Trouba - Brady Skjei
Anthony DeAngelo - Marc Staal
Adam Fox - Ryan Lindgren
The Rangers most recently sent down Phil Di Giuseppe to the Hartford Wolfpack, so he’s probably the most likely player to join the team in Toronto to replace Lemieux.
While the Maple Leafs have won their last six games in a row, they have been struggling to maintain leads - they had to fight back multiple times against the Hurricanes on Monday, and had to make a come from behind victory last night. The last time these two teams played the Rangers managed to tie the game after each Leafs goal until the Toronto boys broke out in the third period.
|23GF - 21GA - +2
|21GF - 23GA - -2
|16% - 11th
|22.6% - 7th
|77.4% - 10th
|84% - 6th
|Auston Matthews - 4
|Colton, Palat - 3
|Mitch Marner - 5
|Nikita Kucherov - 6
|Auston Matthews - 8
|Nikita Kucherov - 8
|Ilya Lyubushkin - 18
|Jan Rutta - 17
|TJ Brodie - 22:44
|Victor Hedman - 25:45
|Jack Campbell - .893sv%
|Andrei Vasilevskiy - .885sv%