The Leafs held their morning skate to get set for tonight's tilt with the Canucks tonight. Here's a sampling of what the team had to say before tonight's game.
Jake Gardiner on communicating vs. the Sedins:
It's huge, especially on the power play. We watched some film today and you almost don't believe some of the passes they make. You have to be ready for any situation, when you don't think they have a play they seem to find each other. You need a lot of talk and a lot of communication.
Joffrey Lupul on if it's more difficult to prep for an opponent you see twice a year:
I would say as a player, yes. The coaching staff is still probably watching the same amount of tape and we'll have meetings throughout the day today and be prepared for what Vancouver brings. Obviously on the east coast I don't see many Canucks games being late at night but we've got some things posted in the room about the way they play and certain players to have an eye out for.
Morgan Rielly on taking on his childhood team:
I had the chance to play them last year and I think it was still pretty cool for me to play them because as a kid growing up I cheered for them. Having the chance to play against them is always fun but you've got to play the game like you would any other team and play hard and try to win. It's always cool to play them... I think last year when we played them at GM Place in Vancouver was pretty cool. I had my parents there and that's the place I went to games when I was younger. To play there was pretty cool.
David Booth on taking on his former team:
Obviously you look forward to playing teams you've played for and also where you grew up — if you grew up by an NHL team you look forward to playing those games as well. This is a game you circle when the schedule comes out back in July. I'm excited... Kassian isn't playing but he likes to run his mouth a bit and has some funny lines so I was kind of looking forward to hearing what he would say, but he's injured. Playing the guys I was there with, the Sedins are always great guys, Burrows is a really great guy too. It's going to be fun playing against them.
Randy Carlyle on the challenge of the Sedins:
I've got lots of history of coaching agianst them when I was in Anaheim and I saw what they can do. They have a unique way of finding one another and it seems that Vrbata has been the third figure on the line and he's fit in there almost seamlessly. They share the puck and move the puck very effectively.
Here are tonight's projected lineups for the Leafs and Canucks...
Toronto Maple Leafs
JVR - Bozak - Kessel
Lupul - Kadri - Santorelli
Winnik - Holland - Clarkson
Booth - Smith - Panik
Phaneuf - Franson
Gardiner - Holzer
Rielly - Robidas
D. Sedin - H. Sedin - Vrbata
Higgins - Bonino - Burrows
Matthias - Richardson - Vey
Dorsett - Horvat - Hansen
Edler - Tanev
Sbisa - Bieksa
Stanton - Weber