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Maple Leafs at Golden Knights preview

Toronto goes for sixth win in seven games; Vegas has lost four in row at home

by Danny Webster / Correspondent

MAPLE LEAFS (35-18-3) at GOLDEN KNIGHTS (31-23-4)



The Game

The Toronto Maple Leafs will look for their sixth win in seven games when they visit the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena on Thursday.

Toronto is 5-1-1 since its mandatory five-day break following the 2019 NHL All-Star Game and one point ahead of the Boston Bruins for second place in the Atlantic Division with a game in hand. Goalie Frederik Andersen is expected to start for the Maple Leafs.

The Golden Knights are 2-6-0 in their past eight games and hope to end a four-game home losing streak, the longest in their history. Coach Gerard Gallant did not commit to a starting goalie after the morning skate.


Players to watch

Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews is one goal from 100 in the NHL.

Golden Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt has three points (two goals, one assist) during a three-game point streak.


They said it

"They got a real good team. Four lines deep, play real fast. I like their team. They're heavy, they're hard to play against. We know we have a real good game tonight." -- Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock

"You better get up for [Toronto] because if you don't, you're going to get your you-know-what kicked. Our job as professional athletes and professional coaches is to get ready for the next game, no matter who you're playing." -- Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant


Maple Leafs projected lineup

Patrick Marleau -- Auston Matthews -- Kasperi Kapanen

Zach Hyman -- John Tavares -- Mitchell Marner

Connor Brown -- Nazem Kadri -- William Nylander

Par Lindholm -- Frederik Gauthier -- Andreas Johnsson

Jake Muzzin -- Morgan Rielly

Jake Gardiner -- Nikita Zaitsev

Travis Dermott -- Ron Hainsey

Frederik Andersen

Garret Sparks

Scratched: Tyler Ennis, Justin Holl, Igor Ozhiganov

Injured: None


Golden Knights projected lineup

Jonathan Marchessault -- William Karlsson -- Reilly Smith

Max Pacioretty -- Paul Stastny -- Alex Tuch

Oscar Lindberg -- Cody Eakin -- Brandon Pirri

William Carrier -- Pierre-Edouard Bellemare -- Ryan Reaves

Brayden McNabb -- Nate Schmidt

Shea Theodore -- Deryk Engelland

Jon Merrill -- Colin Miller

Marc-Andre Fleury

Malcolm Subban

Scratched: Valentin Zykov, Tomas Nosek, Jake Bischoff

Injured: Erik Haula (lower body), Nick Holden (undisclosed), Ryan Carpenter (upper body)


Status report

Pirri (illness) is a game-time decision.


Stat pack

Tavares has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his past five games. … Engelland is expected to play his 600th NHL game. … Tuch has no points in his past six games after getting 14 (four goals, 10 assists) in his previous 13.

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