A pair of teams who are on the verge of being mathematically eliminated from playoff contention will meet tonight when the slipping and sliding Toronto Maple Leafs face the Carolina Hurricanes at the Air Canada Centre. This is the fourth and final meeting between the Maple Leafs and Hurricanes with Carolina winning two of the first three matches. This game essentially in the end has no playoff implications, but a battle for draft positioning, a battle some might say the Maple Leafs’ need to win.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Two shootouts have decided the Maple Leafs’ fate for their last two games. One game the Maple Leafs came out on top, while the other game against the New York Rangers the team lucked out. It has been more than seven weeks since the Maple Leafs won in Toronto. As the diehard fans hope that, that streak will end tonight; some others may probably want another lost in order to get a better draft position.
A four game win streak gave Carolina fans a last hope for a potential playoff spot. But with losses against the Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets, has set back the Hurricanes’ playoff hopes once again. The blue and white defense must keep their eyes out for #12 Eric Staal, as he has been on fire as of late with four goals and three assists over four games.
For tonight’s game the Maple Leafs will be without rookie Matt Frattin (sprained ankle) and Clarke MacArthur (upper body) who are both day-to-day. Joffrey Lupul (separated shoulder), Mike Brown (bruised thigh) and Nikolai Kulemin (broken finger) are all on injured reserve. While the Hurricanes will have to play without the services of defenseman Jaroslav Spacek (lower body) and forward Andreas Nodl (concussion like symptoms).
Rant Sports Toronto Maple Leafs Feature Writer
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