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The extra choices, the merrier.
That’s how Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe is viewing the work of his boss, basic supervisor Kyle Dubas, throughout the previous couple of weeks.
In opposition to the Calgary Flames on Thursday evening on the Scotiabank Saddledome, Keefe had all six of the just lately acquired gamers within the lineup.
In a recreation that featured much more curiosity on the a part of the Leafs than what they put forth an evening earlier in a lopsided loss in Edmonton, the Leafs beat the Flames 2-1.
Mitch Marner had scored a aim and had the puck on a string all evening, whereas Auston Matthews additionally was a pressure with eight photographs on aim and 11 makes an attempt. The Leafs’ finest gamers needed to lead after the debacle towards the Oilers and that’s what occurred as Toronto improved to 6-3-1 within the second recreation of back-to-back units.
Defencemen Luke Schenn and Erik Gustafsson made their debuts following separate trades this week, becoming a member of fellow newcomers Jake McCabe, Sam Lafferty, Ryan O’Reilly and Noel Acciari.
Keefe used 11 forwards and 7 defencemen, sitting winger Zach Aston-Reese and defenceman Timothy Liljegren.
“The problem is we’ve to get guys in and get them snug and determine the correct mix,” Keefe advised reporters earlier than the sport. “However I actually don’t take a look at it as solely totally different than what we’ve been coping with all season. Now we have performed with four-to-six guys from the AHL in our lineup at totally different instances and our crew performed a few of our greatest hockey.
“I don’t suppose you may take a look at this as something however a optimistic, with the expertise we introduced in, the expertise, the depth. We count on it’s going to get higher as we get extra traction, however for me, these are the form of disruptions, if you’ll, which can be nothing however optimistic and one thing our crew has been adapting to all season lengthy.”
Calle Jarnkrok scored the winner at 2:20 of third when he jammed the puck previous goalie Jacob Markstrom after Morgan Rielly obtained in alone.
The Leafs moved to 5 factors forward of the Tampa Bay Lightning, which misplaced to Pittsburgh in extra time, for second place within the Atlantic Division.
Calgary, in the meantime, stays 5 factors out of the second wildcard spot within the Western Convention. The Flames have misplaced 4 in a row.
Marner additionally had eight photographs on aim for a season-high … Will Dubas deal for netminding insurance coverage earlier than the NHL commerce deadline on Friday afternoon? Uncertain, contemplating he has stated just a few instances he likes the tandem of Ilya Samsonov and Matt Murray, with Joseph Woll the following choice. Woll was in a groove towards the Flames, stopping 25 photographs … Marner once more demonstrated he can do issues most NHLers can’t, deking and slicing a swath by means of the Flames defence earlier than scoring alongside the ice on Markstrom at 7:36 of the second to tie the sport … Early momentum within the first interval was there for the Leafs’ taking, however they didn’t seize it. As an alternative, Calgary scored shorthanded after being known as for too many males. The puck skittered previous Gustafsson’s stick on the Flames blue line, giving Blake Coleman a breakaway. At 2:32, Coleman beat Woll on the stick facet … The Flames had a aim disallowed at 8:45 of the second after Keefe challenged. Nazem Kadri beat Woll from the highest of the circle, however a evaluation confirmed Kadri was offside moments earlier, and it wasn’t shut … The Leafs additionally had been denied a 2-1 lead, however beneath totally different circumstances. Markstrom made a pad save on William Nylander on a breakaway by the Leafs star within the remaining minute of the second …
Schenn wore a Leafs sweater for the primary time since April 7, 2012, in Montreal towards the Canadiens. On the draft that June, Schenn was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers for winger James van Riemsdyk. Of Schenn’s 918 NHL video games previous to Thursday, 310 had been with Toronto. “It means quite a bit,” Schenn advised TSN’s Mark Masters throughout the first intermission, referring to his return to Toronto. “It’s the place all of it obtained began. I feel I in all probability didn’t have nearly as good as appreciation as I do now. It’s actual particular. I didn’t know it might ever come full circle like this.” After the Leafs drafted Schenn fifth general in 2008, he grew to become an NHL common the next season.
Rasmus Sandin advised media overlaying the Capitals that he was stunned the Leafs traded him to Washington on Tuesday. “It was not one thing I used to be anticipating,” stated Sandin, the Leafs’ first-round decide in 2018. “Unhappy to go away teammates, however on the similar time, actually excited for the chance right here. It’s not nearly coming right here and being provided that function you need. It’s important to earn it. I’m ready for it. I’m nonetheless younger. I need to enhance on every thing, each offensively and defensively.” … How out-of-sorts had been the Leafs towards the Oilers on Wednesday? Per
, Toronto had one high-danger scoring probability in 48 minutes 48 seconds of five-on-five play. That, as you might need guessed, was unusual low … After the sport in Edmonton, Keefe stated Murray was near getting back from an ankle harm. Murray was scheduled to skate on Friday after taking the time off from the ice on Thursday.
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