Date: Wednesday October 30, 2013
Puck Drop: 8:00pm ET
TV Channel: TSN
Coming off of a resounding 4-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers, the Maple Leafs continue their pilgrimage of the West as they head into Calgary to take on the surprising Flames at the Saddledome on Wednesday night.
While the Flames are “surprising”, it’s more of the surprised they have even won a game as opposed to actually being in contention. They currently sit only ahead of the woeful Edmonton Oilers in the Pacific division standings with only 12 points (albeit in 11 games) this season.
The Leafs, currently sitting atop the Eastern Conference with 18 points, are looking to continue their solid play of late. After struggling in some of their earlier wins this season, the Leafs have put in back-to-back solid performances against Pittsburgh and Edmonton, managing to all but shut down two of the league’s more skilled teams in the process.
After posting a shutout last night in his second straight start, it remains unclear whether or not James Reimer will get the nod a third consecutive time. On one hand Reimer has played exceptionally well in two straight games, and after posting a shutout last night he’s definitely the hot hand. On the other hand, Bernier is fresh and may be the option on the second half of a back-to-back.
With David Clarkson getting his legs under him, Joffrey Lupul back from injury, and Nikolai Kulemin once again skating, the Maple Leafs are getting closer to sending out the lineup they envisioned entering the season. While the absences are no excuse for how poorly they played (while winning) early in the season, having all of these guys and less of David Broll/Trevor Smith/Insert Marlie here in the NHL line up on daily basis can’t hurt the Leafs the rest of the year.
The good times continue to roll as Phil Kessel, JvR, and Nazem Kadri look to make it loud and clear to Randy Carlyle that they are a line that should stay together while Tyler Bozak can go find a new bestie. Leafs win 4-2.