Skip to main content
The Official Site of the Toronto Maple Leafs

Game Day Preview

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
GAME: Florida Panthers (2-3-0-1) at Toronto Maple Leafs (2-4-1-0).

TIME: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m. EDT.

The high-scoring Toronto Maple Leafs have been cooled off as of late. A visit from the Florida Panthers might be enough to get them back on track.

Toronto hopes to get back into the win column when Florida makes its first appearance of the season at Air Canada Centre.

Ed Belfour had an unsuccessful home debut for Toronto on Monday, as he allowed four goals on 26 shots in a 4-1 loss to the Boston Bruins.

Belfour, signed to replace the departed Curtis Joseph as Toronto's No. 1 goalie, missed the team's first three home games due to an infected thumb.

Robert Svehla faces off against his old mates tonight.
Graig Abel Photography
The Maple Leafs, down 4-1 in the second period, were booed off the ice after the second and third periods.

"I thought they were cheering me on. I appreciate the support," said Belfour, who allowed a goal on Boston's first shot.

After scoring 19 goals in its first five games, Toronto has been limited to three in its last two contests.

Linemates Alexander Mogilny and Mats Sundin each extended their respective point streaks to five games Monday. Mogilny, tied for the league lead with 11 points, has one goal and seven assists during his streak while Sundin has two goals and four assists.

Both of Florida's victories this season have come against the winless Atlanta Thrashers, including a 3-2 triumph Monday.

Kristian Huselius scored his second goal of the third period with 87 seconds remaining, as the Panthers snapped a three-game losing streak and held an opponent under four goals for the first time this season.

Huselius was playing in only his third game following a sprained left knee that put him out for all of training camp. In his first game back, against Chicago on Thursday, he scored on his first shot.

"He's a pure goal-scorer, so you have to give him the ice time to give him the confidence to get back to where he wants to be," Florida coach Mike Keenan said.

The Panthers' penalty-killing unit has allowed nine goals in 39 short-handed situations this season, and will be seriously tested against Toronto, the NHL leader with 11 power-play goals.

STANDINGS (through Oct. 21): Panthers - 5 points, 3rd place, 4 PB, Southeast Division. Maple Leafs - 5 points, 2nd place (tied), 4 PB, Northeast Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Panthers - Huselius and Olli Jokinen, 3 goals; Viktor Kozlov, 4 assists; Jokinen, 6 points; Lance Ward, 25 PIM. Maple Leafs - Sundin, 4 goals; Mogilny, 8 assists and 11 points; Karel Pilar, 12 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through Oct. 21): Panthers - Power play: 19.4 percent (6 for 31), 11th (tied) in NHL. Penalty killing: 76.9 percent (30 for 39), 28th (tied). Maple Leafs - Power play: 25.6 percent (11 for 43), 3rd. Penalty killing: 81.4 percent (35 for 43), 17th.

GOALTENDERS: Panthers - Roberto Luongo (2-4-0, 0 SO, 3.06 GAA); Jani Hurme (0-0-0, 5.63). Maple Leafs - Belfour (1-1-1, 1, 1.95); Trevor Kidd (1-3-0, 3.78).

2001-02 SEASON SERIES: Maple Leafs, 2-1-1. Sundin led Toronto with four goals in the series. Jokinen had two goals for Florida.

LAST MEETING: April 6; Tied, 2-2. At Toronto, Kidd made 46 saves for the Panthers, and Peter Worrell and Jokinen scored as Florida earned a tie despite getting outshot 48-25.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Panthers - 1-3-0-0 on the road; Maple Leafs - 1-3-0-0 at home.
View More