Keefe makes shocking announcement regarding Sunday's starter against Detroit

Published January 13, 2024 at 12:45

With Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe making the obvious choice for Saturday night's starter against the Colorado Avalanche in Martin Jones, there are still decisions to make for Sunday night's start against our divisional rival opponent, the Detroit Red Wings in the second half of the back-to-back.

Keefe confirmed on Saturday afternoon that he wants to give Martin Jones the night off on Sunday night after a busy schedule. Jones is projected to start in his seventh consecutive game tonight and has played a lot of hockey as of late, including both games in the team's previous back-to-back against Los Angeles and Anaheim.

"Jones won't play tomorrow. That would be overdoing it. Even though it's a back-to-back at home, he has played a lot this week already. We're going to need another guy tomorrow, but let's focus on today."

Tomorrow, Keefe will have his hands full on deciding who starts in goal. Does he make the difficult decision to risk starting Ilya Samsonov, who has struggled this season and only conditioned for about a week in the minors after his demotion? He has yet to play a game since late in the month of December and his last 4 starts have been anything but good.

The other option for the Leafs is the one that fans are hoping for. That, of course, is recalling Marlies starter Dennis Hildeby to give him the opportunity to start in his first ever game at the NHL level.

Hildeby has been patient with waiting his turn to make his NHL debut. After not playing a game for about two weeks, he secured his third shutout last night with the Marlies, snapping Belleville's seven game win streak and picking up his first AHL assist in an 8-0 victory in which he made 20 saves.

We will likely have to wait until tomorrow to hear Keefe's decision on Sunday's starter, because the Maple Leafs will have their minds focused on beating a tough Colorado Avalanche team who are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games.

If you had to make the choice on who starts in the second of back-to-back games on Sunday against Detroit, which goalie would you choose? Let us know in the poll below!
January 13   |   820 answers
Keefe makes shocking announcement regarding Sunday's starter against Detroit

Who should start Sunday against Detroit?

Dennis Hildeby51462.7 %
Ilya Samsonov17020.7 %
Martin Jones13616.6 %
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