UPDATE: the Friday game between the Texas Stars and the Toronto Marlies has been cancelled.
The Toronto Maple Leafs don’t play until Sunday when they are on the road to play the Florida Panthers. No Saturday Night game. No Friday game. Sunday. That’s a lot of days between games, even with the outdoor practices during the days.
However, for those craving some hockey action and only care about the Buds (who are All Day), you are in luck! The Toronto Marlies have three games on the road between now and puck drop on Sunday evening. Two in Cedar Park, Texas this Friday and Saturday before a quick drive to San Antonio for a matinee that should end right on time for the Leafs game at 7pm ET!
The team is currently on their “Boat Show Road Trip” in Texas while their rink at Coca Cola Coliseum is being filled up with liquid water for the annual Toronto Boat Show.
Friday, Jan 10th: Toronto Marlies @ Texas Stars (DAL) — puck drop 8:00pm ET
Saturday, Jan 11th: Toronto Marlies @ Texas Stars (DAL) — puck drop 8:00pm ET
Sunday, Jan 12th: Toronto Marlies @ San Antonio Rampage (STL) — puck drop 4:00pm ET
How to Watch
You are in luck this week! AHL.tv is having one of their “FREEVIEW” game days on Friday the 10th. This means all 14 games on the schedule, starting at 7pm with the likes of Laval vs. Syracuse and Lehigh Valley vs. Utica, and ending with a bunch of Western Conference games, including the Marlies and Stars at 8pm.
Go to https://www.watchtheahl.com/ and make a free account to watch as many games as you would like. There are mid-season packages available as well as a single-day pass if all you want is tonight and Saturday. Leafs Nation Network will also be airing the games over the weekend for those with that in their cable package (if anyone has that anymore).
Here’s a quick list of who’s on the Toronto Marlies roster for this upcoming road trip:
Egor Korshkov, Nic Petan, Pontus Aberg, Kenny Agostino, Jeremy Bracco, Kalle Kossila, Tyler Gaudet, Garrett Wilson, Matt Read, Tanner MacMaster, Darren Archibald, Hudson Elynuik, Rich Clune, Nicholas Baptiste, Colt Conrad, Scott Pooley, Giovanni Fiore
Rasmus Sandin, Timothy Liljegren, Teemu Kivihalme, Jesper Lindgren, Mac Hollowell, Kristians Rubins, Jordan Schmaltz, Ben Harpur
Kasimir Kaskisuo, Joseph Woll
The team is already in Texas, so unless the Leafs want to charter another flight, recent scratch Mason Marchment likely won’t be joining them for this trip. That’s a good sign for his NHL prospects, but not quite as great for the Marlies forward depth.
The defense will be an important part of this team to watch. From when Greg Moore took on the job on December 21st, the Marlies have been out-shot 206-289. Over those eight games, that’s about 10 shots fewer per game (26-36) than their opponent.
Granted, they’ve been currently holding their defense together with Timothy Liljegren and a band of misfit toys. No one’s looked good during this 3-5-0 stretch, especially the forwards. Conversations about effort have definitely been bandied about in the past few weeks.
But now Sandin and Kivihalme are back in the lineup, and Korshkov seemed healed from his right leg laceration. Hopefully this trip is a chance for the team to coalesce into a cohesive unit. They’ve had a week of practices, so hopefully they have everything figured out.
In terms of the rosters the Marlies will be facing, there are definitely some names fans will recognize.
First and foremost, the Texas Stars have Nick Robertson’s big brother, Jason Robertson, at forward. The big left winger is in his first AHL season, posting 12 goals in 36 games so far. The Stars also have Maple’s Adam Mascherin, Brad McClure (not sure if related to Troy), and Jake Oettinger (former Boston NCAA rival of Joseph Woll’s) in net.
The San Antonio Rampage have old friend Andreas Borgman, older friend Dakota Joshua, older enemy Jake Dotchin, Aussie Nathan Walker, and top prospect Klim Kostin. That’s a roster full of stories.