A Maple Leafs seventh-straight victory could be on its way later tonight when the Blue and White take on the green and white, in the Lone Star State.
MAPLE LEAFS (27-20-5) at STARS (22-20-8)
TV: TSN, FS-SW
Last 10: Toronto 6-4-0; Dallas 2-7-0
Leafs are looking to take both games of the season series tonight with the Dallas Stars, who put a season high 50 shots on Jonathan Bernier the last time these two clubs met, which was back on Dec. 5, the Leafs won that game 3-2 in a shootout at the Air Canada Centre.
Toronto can extend their win streak to seven games tonight, something they have not done since the 2003-04 season when they won eight straight.
Dallas has lost nine of their past 11 games, however they have taken points from Toronto in four games at the American Airlines Centre. The last time Toronto and Dallas played there was Nov. 25, 2011.
As everyone knows by now, these Leafs are not to be taken lightly anymore, once Phil Kessel started finding the back of the net, the team has been finding their way back into the win column. Kessel has lit up several teams over the past week with a wrist shot that is usually considered to be a lethal weapon. He has used it to beat Ryan Miller and Carey Price last week with shots that they normally stop.
Head Coach Randy Carlyle doesn’t say a whole lot as to why this team is now starting to play like a playoff team, and even looks lost for words when it comes to explaining why they are winning. In fact I almost think he looks more in his element when the team loses, maybe because it’s a lot easier to pick everything apart.
The team’s goaltending is also coming back to what it was back on Oct/Nov. both Bernier and Reimer are on winning streaks…wow.
“There’s a lot more life in the room,” defenseman Dion Phaneuf said after the win Tuesday. “We’ve got a confidence in our dressing room that we feel good about ourselves.”
In terms of the standings, they are now dead-even with the Montreal Canadiens. Not long ago, they were nowhere near Montreal (they took two points from them last Saturday and didn’t give any back-no OT or SO), so that was mission definitely accomplished, and now they sit five points over top of Detroit, who are currently only four games over. 500.
Kessel continues to be on yet another hot streak, riding a seven-game point streak, and like a hot goalie, when he goes, so does the rest of the team. He has six goals and eight assists through those seven games, sounds like someone is getting ready for Sochi???
Maple Leafs forwards David Clarkson (elbow), Dave Bolland (ankle surgery), Trevor Smith (broken hand) and Frazer McLaren (shoulder) are on injured reserve. Clarkson and McLaren could be activated on Thursday. … Stars defenseman Stephane Robidas (broken leg) is on IR.