Leafs select starting goalie against Winnipeg
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Leafs confirm starting goaltender for tonight's game in Winnipeg

Published January 27, 2024 at 10:15
BY DEAN CHAUDHRY

After a couple of days between meetings, the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Winnipeg Jets will clash tonight in Winnipeg in what will be the Leafs' final game before they host next week's All-Star festivities.

The Leafs took the last meeting against the Jets on Wednesday by a score of 1-0 in a nail-biter, thanks to an outstanding performance by goaltender Ilya Samsonov, who appeared to be feeling a lot more like himself, posting a 32-save shutout. Now, it appears as though he'll draw the second start against the Jets tonight as well.

Martin Jones did a valiant job between the pipes with Samsonov struggling and Joseph Woll on the mend as he cruised to a 8-3-0 record with 2 shutouts and a .934 SV% while allowing just 21 goals in those 12 appearances. Unfortunately, Jones has struggled over his last 5 games, going 1-3-1 with an .857 SV% and a 4.00 G.A.A. He allowed 4 or more goals in 3 of those games, including 6 in his last start against Vancouver.

Samsonov's return to form couldn't have come at a better time as the Maple Leafs had to endure a rather difficult stretch in the schedule, facing off against white-hot Western Conference opponents on the road. They ended up going 2-2 on their 4-game road trip.


In his last start against the Jets, Samsonov was tasked in making 16 stops in the first period, including a 2-on-0 shorthanded break where he robbed both Adam Lowry and Morgan Barron. The game could have easily tilted from that moment but he kept his club in it the entire time before Auston Matthews scored the overtime winner for his 39th of the season.

Samsonov and the Leafs would love to head into their bye week on a 3-game winning streak, so look for the Leafs to roll into Winnipeg on a mission tonight. A win tonight would also mark Ilya Samsonov's first 3-game win streak of the season.

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Leafs confirm starting goaltender for tonight's game in Winnipeg

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