The Toronto Maple Leafs will look to rebound from two consecutive losses as they host the Anaheim Ducks tonight at the Air Canada Centre. The Ducks might not have the same top-to-bottom depth as the Chicago Blackhawks (the Leafs’ most recent opponent), but they’re still a good possession team that has benefitted from outstanding goaltending from Jonas Hiller and Viktor Fasth. Even their third-stringer, Frederik Andersen, posted a 24-save shutout in his first career NHL start.
Unsurprisingly, Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf lead the Ducks’ attack with nine points each, and the surprising Mathieu Perrault, who the Ducks picked up from the Washington Capitals for only an AHLer and a fourth-round draft pick, is third on the team with eight points. Jakob Silfverberg, who was the main piece the Ducks acquired in the Bobby Ryan trade with the Ottawa Senators, is second on the team with four goals, but will get fourth-line duty tonight as he’s been struggling with illness. For more Ducks news and information, be sure to check out Pucks of a Feather.
Kyle Palmieri – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
- I would prefer to see Leivo on that second line alongside Kadrupul instead of McClement. Leivo has impressed with his speed, tenacity and offensive ability in his few games up with the Leafs this year. I’d like to see what he can do playing with two offensively inclined guys in Kadri and Lupul.
- The Leafs need to figure out a way to get Kessel going, as he’s been quiet in his last two games with zero points and only six shots total. We’ve been suggesting this forever, but it might do him some good to get a few shifts with Kadri to see if he can spark him.
- Tonight will be Rielly’s eighth game of the season, meaning he has one more game left after tonight before his entry-level contract kicks in. It’s starting to look more and more like the Leafs are planning to keep him around for the entire season. It should be interesting to see him go head-to-head with Fowler tonight, as I think they both play very similar games, and Fowler is a a young defenseman who played his first full season as a 19-year-old, and has developed into a very good player.
- The game will start just after 7 p.m. and can be seen on Rogers Sportsnet Ontario and heard on TSN 1050.