Maple Leafs Hope To Dim Panthers Playoff Hopes

Published February 20, 2018 at 2:15 PM

"Toronto Maple Leafs 77 pts (36-20-5)
Florida Panthers 58 pts (26-24-6)
7 p.m. ET
Air Canada Centre – Toronto, ON
TV: Sportsnet Ontario
Radio: TSN 1050 AM

Season Series/Schedule
Date Game GWG
11/22 TOR 1 @ FLA 2 SO Nick Bjugstad
2/20 FLA @ TOR
2/27 TOR @ FLA
3/28 FLA @ TOR

Team Leaders
Maple Leafs Panthers
Auston Matthews, 49 Points Aleksander Barkov, 54
Auston Matthews, 27 Goals Vincent Trocheck, 22
Gardiner/Nylander/Marner, 32 Assists Jonathan Huberdeau, 35

Tonight's second meeting between the Maple Leafs and Panthers comes at a time when both teams are playing very well. Despite getting beat up by the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday, the Panthers have won seven of their last 10 games. They still have slim playoff hopes as they are currently six points behind the Carolina Hurricanes for the final wild card spot.
Veteran goaltender Roberto Luongo returned to the Panthers net on Saturday and led the team to a 6-3 victory over the Calgary Flames in his first game in over two months. Former Maple Leaf James Reimer played on Sunday and gave up six of the seven Winnipeg goals.
Center Tyler Bozak missed today's morning skate, but he will be in his normal spot between James van Riemsdyk and Connor Brown tonight.
The only change to the lineup from Sunday's win over the Detroit Red Wings is the return of Roman Polak to the third defensive pairing. Connor Carrick will be the healthy scratch along with Josh Leivo and Matt Martin.

Probable Maple Leafs Lineup
Zach Hyman - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Patrick Marleau - Nazem Kadri - Mitch Marner
James van Riemsdyk - Tyler Bozak - Connor Brown
Leo Komarov - Dominic Moore - Kasperi Kapanen
Morgan Rielly - Ron Hainsey
Jake Gardiner - Nikita Zaitsev
Travis Dermott – Roman Polak
Frederik Andersen (29-16-4, 2.71 GAA, .921 save %, 4 SO)
LW-Joffrey Lupul (sports hernia) out

Probable Panthers Lineup
Evgenii Dadonov - Aleksander Barkov - Nick Bjugstad
Jonathan Huberdeau - Vincent Trocheck - Denis Malgin
Jamie McGinn - Jared McCann – Connor Brickley
Micheal Haley - Derek MacKenzie - Colton Sceviour
Keith Yandle - Aaron Ekblad
Mike Matheson - Mark Pysyk
Ian McCoshen - Alexander Petrovic
Roberto Luongo (7-6-1, 2.64 GAA, .927 save %, 1 SO)

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