Sabres Visit Leafs for First Time Since December 2019
It’s going to be a tough one north of the border.
Buffalo Sabres (16-30-8) vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (35-14-4)
Puck Drop: 7:30 PM EST | ScotiaBank Arena | Toronto, ON
Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Leafs Blog: Pension Plan Puppets
Know Your Opponent
Toronto Maple Leafs
Last Game: 5-3 win over Washington
Division Ranking: 3rd, Atlantic Division
PP: 1st (29.2%)
PK: 6th (84.7%)
What to Watch
1. Very Different Trajectories
At this point in the season, the Sabres and Leafs are on very different trajectories. The Leafs are on a three-game winning streak heading into Wednesday’s game, but they’ve actually been a bit hot and cold lately. A six-game winning streak that ended on February 7 was followed up by two losses, then two wins. The Leafs then lost three straight before opening their current streak.
With that said, the Leafs still look pretty good right now. They’re third in the division, which would put them in a playoff spot, and they’ve scored 18 goals in their last three games. Granted, that 10-7 game against Detroit was probably a one-off outlier, but still.
As Toronto looks to extend its winning streak, the Sabres are still hoping to snap a six-game losing skid. Tonight’s game also wraps up a lengthy road trip for Buffalo, who will now return home for five straight. (That includes the ‘home’ game at Tim Hortons Field in Hamilton, ON.)
2. Scoring & Depth
Auston Matthews is top-five in the NHL in scoring, with 68 points in 50 games this season. He leads the Leafs with 37 goals, but he’s not the only one to watch. Mitch Marner has only appeared in 44 games this season, but has 35 assists and 56 points overall. John Tavares has also hit the 50-point mark, while William Nylander is approaching that point. Matthews has points in seven of his last 10 games.
3. Injury Updates
Jack Quinn has returned to practice & was assigned to the AHL’s Rochester Americans. It sounds like he may be in action when the Amerks host the Syracuse Crunch on Wednesday night, a good way to get him back in the swing of things before he hopefully returns to the NHL.
Colin Miller, who has been week-to-week with an upper-body injury, skated on Wednesday. That’s good news for the Sabres ahead of the upcoming trade deadline if they hope to move him.
Zemgus Girgensons & Henri Jokiharju remain week-to-week. Will Butcher, Vinnie Hinostroza & Quinn are considered day-to-day.
Jeff Skinner - Tage Thompson - Alex Tuch
Casey Mittelstadt - Dylan Cozens - Kyle Okposo
Rasmus Asplund - Peyton Krebs - Victor Olofsson
Anders Bjork - Cody Eakin - John Hayden
Rasmus Dahlin - Jacob Bryson
Mattias Samuelsson - Casey Fitzgerald
Robert Hagg - Mark Pysyk
Starting Goalie: Craig Anderson
Toronto Maple Leafs
Michael Bunting - Auston Matthews - Mitch Marner
Alex Kerfoot - John Tavares - William Nylander
Ilya Mikheyev - David Kampf - Pierre Engvall
Nick Robertson - Jason Spezza - Wayne Simmonds
Morgan Rielly - Rasmus Sandin
T.J. Brodie - Justin Holl
Travis Dermott - Ilya Lyubushkin
Starting Goalie: Petr Mrazek