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Preview: Maple Leafs at Ducks

Anaheim goaltender Jonathan Bernier starts fourth straight; Toronto aims to avoid fifth loss in row

by Dan Arritt / Correspondent

MAPLE LEAFS (28-21-14) at DUCKS (32-21-10)

10 p.m. ET; FS-W, TSN4, NHL.TV


Maple Leafs team scope

Goaltender Curtis McElhinney will start for the first time since making 37 saves in a 4-0 victory against the Carolina Hurricanes on Feb. 19, with the Toronto Maple Leafs looking to avoid their fifth straight loss. Frederik Andersen, who was with the Anaheim Ducks the past three seasons, played in a 3-2 shootout loss at the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday. Toronto is tied in points with the New York Islanders for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference; the Islanders have one game in hand. The Maple Leafs have lost four consecutive games (0-3-1) and are 5-7-5 in their past 17 games. "We need to start winning," forward Leo Komarov said after the loss to the Kings. "I'm not looking at [the standings] personally, but I think there's a lot of people talking about the playoffs and I know a lot of guys who are looking at the standings, but we can't keep doing that. It can change in one week, or it can change in one day." The Maple Leafs are 1-8 in shootouts this season. "I don't really know how to explain it," forward Tyler Bozak said. "We just haven't had good luck. It's one of those things, you can't get too high when you win them and you can't get too low when you lose them. We want to make the playoffs and, when we get there, we won't have to deal with them."


Ducks team scope

The Anaheim Ducks return from their five-day break having alternated wins and losses for the past eight games. The Ducks are in third place in the Pacific Division, two points behind the second-place Edmonton Oilers and two points ahead of the Calgary Flames. Goaltender Jonathan Bernier, who played the past three seasons with the Maple Leafs, will start his fourth straight game in place of John Gibson, who is out with a lower-body injury. Gibson played in 48 of Anaheim's first 60 games. "When [Gibson] tells us he's right, he's right," coach Randy Carlyle said after practice Thursday. "Injuries at this time of the year. … You can't hurry the nature's healing of the body in some situations." Forward Patrick Eaves will play his second game for Anaheim following his trade from the Dallas Stars on Feb. 24. Eaves played the day after the trade and had five shots on goal and 16:09 of ice time in a 4-1 loss to the Kings. "I was just kind of thrown into the fire there," Eaves said after the morning skate Friday. "Once you get the system down where you don't have to think, you kind of know you're in the flow of things. I hope to get into that situation quickly."


Maple Leafs projected lineup

Leo Komarov -- Nazem Kadri -- Connor Brown

James van Riemsdyk -- Tyler Bozak -- Mitchell Marner

Zach Hyman -- Auston Matthews -- William Nylander

Matt Martin -- Brian Boyle -- Nikita Soshnikov

Morgan Rielly -- Alexey Marchenko

Jake Gardiner -- Nikita Zaitsev

Matt Hunwick -- Roman Polak

Curtis McElhinney

Frederik Andersen

Scratched: Ben Smith, Martin Marincin, Eric Fehr

Injured: Connor Carrick (upper body)


Ducks projected lineup

Ondrej Kase -- Ryan Getzlaf -- Nick Ritchie

Patrick Eaves -- Rickard Rakell -- Corey Perry

Andrew Cogliano -- Ryan Kesler -- Jakob Silfverberg

Logan Shaw -- Nate Thompson -- Chris Wagner

Cam Fowler -- Sami Vatanen

Hampus Lindholm -- Josh Manson

Brandon Montour -- Kevin Bieksa

Jonathan Bernier

Jhonas Enroth

Scratched: Korbinian Holzer, Jared Boll

Injured: Simon Despres (upper body), Clayton Stoner (lower body), John Gibson (lower body)


Status report

The Ducks lost fourth-line forward Joseph Cramarossa to the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday after placing him on waivers the day before. Cramarossa had 10 points (four goals, six assists) and 51 penalty minutes in 49 games with Anaheim. The Ducks filled the roster spot by recalling Wagner from San Diego of the American Hockey League, where he had 19 points (12 goals, seven assists) and a plus-10 rating in 30 games. Wagner has three goals and a minus-3 rating in 25 games with the Anaheim this season.


Who's hot

Matthews leads the NHL with 26 even-strength goals and is the only player in the top four in that category without an empty-net goal. He has 11 points (six goals, five assists) in his past nine games. … Nylander has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his past nine games. … Getzlaf has seven points (three goals, four assists) in his past seven games.

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