After their win over the St. Louis Blues, there was no rest for the Maple Leafs who were back at MasterCard Centre for practice Friday ahead of Saturday’s Hockey Hall Of Fame Game against Ottawa.
“I know for the fans it’s the Battle Of Ontario but I think both teams go into not thinking of it as those terms,” said head coach Ron Wilson.
The two teams have split the first two meetings with each winning on home ice.
“It’s a division game which is always big,” Wilson noted. “They’re within shouting distance of us and we have to respect how they play.”
The Senators have a few tough guys in their lineup although Chris Neil is expected to miss the game but Wilson will not be inserting either Jay Rosehill
or Colton Orr after the win over the Blues.
“We will go with the fastest, quickest lineup that we can and try and play our game,” Wilson said.
The Leafs were without defenceman Mike Komisarek
for the full practice on Friday. Joffrey Lupul
meanwhile left practice but he and Komisarek are expected to be in the lineup on Saturday after Wilson termed their absences as maintenance days.
There was no word as to who would get the start against the Senators in goal but Wilson was impressed with the way that Ben Scrivens
rebounded on Thursday.
“As I expected he battled back,” Wilson said.
“He’s played a lot of games collegiately, junior somewhere and in the American League. Goalies are always going to have bad games but they usually bounce back.”
In the eyes of the head coach playing at the NHL level probably isn’t the toughest adjustment that Scrivens will have to make.
“What he has to go through is playing in this kind of market, dealing with sudden fame and attention and that is hard to deal with,” Wilson observed.