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Toronto Maple Leafs Game Preview & Live Thread (Number 29): Dallas Stars

Who: Dallas Stars (13-9-4) at Toronto Maple Leafs (14-11-3)

Where: Air Canada Centre (Toronto, ON)

When: 7:00 PM ET

Where to watch: Leafs TV

Where to listen: Sportsnet 590 The Fan

Enemy blog: Blackout Dallas

Lineups (via Daily Faceoff):

LEAFS

Forwards

James van RiemsdykNazem KadriPhil Kessel

Mason RaymondPeter HollandDavid Clarkson

Carter AshtonTrevor SmithNikolai Kulemin

Frazer McLarenJay McClement – Jerry D’Amigo

Defense

Dion PhaneufCarl Gunnarsson

Mark FraserCody Franson

Paul RangerJake Gardiner

Goalies

Jonathan Bernier

James Reimer

STARS

Forwards

Jamie BennTyler SeguinRich Peverley

Ray WhitneyCody EakinAlex Chiasson

Antoine RousselVernon FiddlerDustin Jeffrey

Erik ColeShawn HorcoffValeri Nichushkin

Defense

Alex GoligoskiTrevor Daley

Brenden DillonJamie Oleksiak

Sergei GoncharKevin Connauton

Goalies

Kari Lehtonen

Dan Ellis

  • Tonight’s game features another intriguing goalie battle. Lehtonen owns a .928 save percentage in 20 games and is making a case to be included in Finland’s Olympic team. Bernier’s save percentage is nearly identical at .929, although he’s played two less games. Bernier will be looking to rebound after a tough game in Montreal on Saturday when he let in four goals.
  • If you missed the injury news today, Tyler Bozak and Colton Orr were both placed on injured reserve. Bozak has an oblique strain and Orr has an elbow problem. That means Kadri gets reintroduced to the first-line role, while D’Amigo was called up from the Marlies. D’Amigo could make his Leafs debut tonight.
  • I say “if”, because the Leafs could still opt to go with seven defensemen as Franson appears to be ready to return. If they go with six, it’ll be interesting to see who sits. I really hope it’s Fraser and not Morgan Rielly.
  • Seguin has missed the last two games with a concussion, but could be ready to return tonight. If he does, expect a big game out of him, because he’s a Good Ontario Boy (TM) after all. Benn leads the Stars’ offensive attack with 25 points, while Seguin is right behind him with 23. The Stars lack “star” power after those two, but still have a lot of good young depth with players like Chiasson, Eakin and Nichushkin.
  • Comment below to participate in the game thread. You can also follow along with your favourite Leafs tweeters right here (glove tap to J.P. from Japers’ Rink for showing me how to embed a Twitter list):


  • Any predictions? Unfortunately, I just can’t see the Leafs winning this one with the way Lehtonen is playing. If Seguin is ruled out, I think the Leafs have a much better chance. My final score prediction is 4-2 Stars, but I sincerely hope I’m wrong.

Nevertheless, GO LEAFS GO!

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