Game Day Notes: Leafs @ Hurricanes

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AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Nathan Denette

A potential four-point swing at play in a game between two wildcard playoff spot competitors tonight in Carolina.

– As we’ve all heard by now, Peter Holland has joined the Marlies for the first time since the trade and Carter Ashton (10 goals, 15 points in 14 AHL games) has been recalled. Holland is three games away from hitting the 25-game mark, and the condition on the draft selection in the trade with Anaheim is that 25 games played upgrades the third round pick to a 2nd.

– It does seem likely, though, that Peter Holland is going to be called upon at least three more times this season and the 2nd round pick will be lost. We haven’t heard anything on Trevor Smith, but based on the timeline reported at the time of his injury he’s still weeks away. Dave Bolland probably isn’t in the conversation until after the Olympic Break. At some point injury, another suspension, or the team needing more options will likely necessitate a recall. The guy had eight points in 10 games at one point, all but one point at even strength, on a team struggling for 5 v 5 offense. Not like he doesn’t provide a useful option.

The logical decision, of course, was to play both Holland and Ashton and maybe boost the scoring depth of the lineup.

– Carter Ashton played center in junior and in one game for the Leafs earlier this season vs. Buffalo. He played 5:10 in that game and went 3 for 3 in the faceoff circle. Depending on the status of David Clarkson, it seems McLaren, Orr, Ashton will be the fourth line tonight and tomorrow, and it will play a negligible amount in a back-to-back scenario.

– Clarkson reportedly hobbled out of the game day skate this morning after breaking his stick in frustration. Doesn’t sound like he’ll go tonight. If he can play tonight or tomorrow vs. the Capitals, one imagines he joins McClement and Kulemin while D’Amigo shifts down to line 4 with Ashton (at center) and Orr.

– Carl Gunnarsson is a game time decision.

– Cam Ward will not start for the Hurricanes, as he is out indefinitely with a lower body injury. Look out, though, as Anton Khudobin has won three in a row and is 5-0-0 with a .940 save percentage and 1.99 goals against average this season. Khudobin was 1-1 against the Leafs as a member of the Bruins with a 2.50 goals against average and a .868 save percentage.

– Eric Staal is out tonight with a lower body injury. Jeff Skinner is expected to center Tuomo Ruutu and Alexander Semin on the Canes’ top line.

– James Reimer will start for the Maple Leafs for the first time in seven games. He’s 4-1-1 against the Hurricanes in his career, stopping 146 of 156 shots over the six starts (.936 save percentage).

– The Leafs won the last meeting between the two teams 5-2 a little over a week ago. Here was the Game in 10 report. The Hurricanes enter tonight winners of four straight since that December 29 meeting.

– The Hurricanes trail the Leafs by two points for the final wildcard spot and hold a game in hand. The full playoff implications of the next two games are laid out here. Carolina (18-16-9) has the worst goal differential of any team in the League with more regulation wins than regulation losses.

Projected Lineups:

Assuming no Gunnarsson/Clarkson:

TML LINEUP
JvR – Bozak – Kessel
Raymond – Kadri – Lupul
D’Amigo – McClement – Kulemin
McLaren – Ashton – Orr

Gleason – Phaneuf
Gardiner – Franson
Rielly – Ranger

Reimer

HURRICANES LINEUP
Ruutu – Skinner – Semin
Gerbe – J. Staal – Dwyer
Boychuk – Sutter – Lindholm
Bowman – Malhotra – Dvorak

Faulk – Sekera
Harrison – Bellemore
Liles – Murphy

Khudobin

Randy Carlyle Presser:

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  • Conis

    You can count on a goal from Liles.  That’s just the way it goes.

  • rustynail

    Poor Ashton centering those too. Sucks that Ward is out e has not played well recently at all.

  • mlclearwater

    rustynail what the fuck are ORR and Mclaren going to do out there tonight? Car has no one really that would fight them. Guess we dont have too many options

  • rustynail

    mlclearwater rustynail Holland ? :)

  • mlclearwater

    Murph2417 rustynail mlclearwater Bodie

  • mlclearwater

    Murph2417 rustynail mlclearwater I jsut dont get RC sometimes

  • rustynail

    mlclearwater Murph2417 rustynail pretty sure Holland demotion was Nonis move for not playing him

  • mapleaf13

    Let’s go Reimer! Shut em out and win that Friday night back-to-back start!!

  • MaxwellHowe

    This is not funny anymore.  Why are McLaren and Orr in the lineup?  Seriously.  Someone please tell me a cap team is not so devoid of depth that Orr and MacLaren must be in the lineup every night.
    For this alone Carlyle demonstrates his incompetence.

  • vinoa

    MaxwellHowe Since we’re still paying him, can we get Tucker in there?

  • Mind Bomb

    MaxwellHowe  You said it right there bro, we dont have the Cap to call up anymore

  • Alec Brownscombe

    hoolihan MaxwellHowe McLaren needs to be waived, in other words.

  • MaxwellHowe

    B-I-N-G-O

  • vinoa

    hoolihan TheCanucksnaphook Grabbo was our 3rd line guy last year and there were plenty of complaint about his lack of production.

  • lieffan

    hoolihan TheCanucksnaphook Grabovski played that role last season. Kadri played sheltered third line minutes and ripped it up.

  • MaxwellHowe

    Cheer up.  By the end of the night McClement will have centred every line!!

  • vinoa

    MaxwellHowe Except for the lines that score lol

  • rustynail

    hoolihan rustynail mlclearwater Murph2417 would I play him 5 min a night :)

  • Mind Bomb

    hoolihan MaxwellHowe That is why earlier I was leary about obtain another 50 point 6 mil player in ROR earlier , I am hoping we are not so jammed cap wise next year

  • theacs1966

    No Saturday night game again this week?

  • rustynail

    hoolihan MaxwellHowe real IR opens up roster spots :)

  • vinoa

    hoolihan vinoa TheCanucksnaphook He usually played on the wing though when he wasn’t killing penalties. McClement is a 4th liner at best. Let’s not kid ourselves, if Bolland was available McClement would be on the 4th line and PK.

  • Mind Bomb

    rustynail hoolihan MaxwellHowe So then whats the difference with LTIR ?

  • theacs1966

    hoolihan MaxwellHowe They can both be sent to the minors and all but 25k would come off the cap, plenty of room to call up Broll and or Devane or Abbott.

  • MaxwellHowe

    Wow.  Wade Redden retired.  Officially.  Of course, he stopped playing hockey several years ago

  • vinoa

    hoolihan vinoa TheCanucksnaphook Which is why I’m still willing to wait it out before firing Carlyle. Personally I still think it’s on Nonis. Should’ve made a contingency plan. Injuries to key players isn’t a valid excuse for a professional like NoNo.

  • MaxwellHowe

    Yeah, and thank goodness.  Imagine ff it was the Senators beating the Leafs’ ass the last few years.  And yes, I think Bruins wold be mediocre without Chara.

  • theacs1966

    hoolihan theacs1966 MaxwellHowe What are you talking about?  Broll and Devane are bottom 6 players, and what about Abbott makes him useless.  He’s ripping it up, put him with Ashton and see if they can make magic on the big team.  CAn’t hurt to try and all three played for the Leafs already this year.

  • vinoa

    hoolihan vinoa TheCanucksnaphook Aside from Clarkson who else would you say is underperforming? Kadri’s still learning the league so his troubles should have been expected. JVR’s been producing well enough to make the US team. I don’t think we expected Raymond to be a saviour and Lupul didn’t do much to get us into the playoffs last year (injured for most of it).

  • MaxwellHowe

    I tried to paste a link, unsuccessfully, to today’s TSN tradecentre report.  All about what MacTavish might or might not do, could or could not do.  Most meaningless and pointless collection of words in the history of sports journalism

  • Marleafs

    vinoa hoolihan TheCanucksnaphook The first half of the season Grabbo centred the 2nd line, which was in fact the Leafs checking line. Multiple times McClement played wing on that line. Kadi played protected minutes on the 3rd line (thats why he racked up all those points in the first half). Once Grabbo got into RCs bad books he was slotted down to the 3rd line.

  • Mind Bomb

    hoolihan Mind Bomb rustynail MaxwellHowe Aye, I though so, The we are recouping Bollands Cap hit to date right ? we can absorb more salary in a trade this year say at the deadline

  • Mind Bomb

    vinoa hoolihan TheCanucksnaphook Carlyle :)

  • theacs1966

    hoolihan theacs1966 MaxwellHowe How do you know that?  He’s only played on one game..  If the facepunchers are gone, then Broll or Devane could at least fill those roles if not more.  If the 4th is more effective, they’ll play more than 4 minutes a game.  Right now they play 4 minutes a game because they suck donkey balls.

  • Marleafs

    vinoa When we had a checking line at the beginning of this season it was McClement, Bolland and Kulemin. No idea where you are getting all this McClement = 4th line.

  • vinoa

    Mind Bomb vinoa hoolihan TheCanucksnaphook Touche lol

  • Greg Fenton

    TheCanucksnaphook To be fair, Nonis could be in trade talks that involve that pick, and needs/wants to save it at least for a bit to keep a trade chip he may need on the table. 

    I agree that the 3rd line has very little offensive talent on it and Holland is better then McClement, but lets not go to far with this. Holland has 6 goals this year, its not he woujld make that 3rd line dangerous or anything.

  • theacs1966

    mlclearwater rustynail I don’t get it either.  Ashton goes down, plays in the top six, scores at will, get’s called up and is put between 2 men who can’t play hockey.  He goes from top six minutes and the skill player there, to 2 of our worst players at 4 minutes a game.  He’s guaranteed to fail.  If he does anything, he’ll have to do it all on his own, end to end rush.

  • bear19

    MaxwellHowe
    Unfortunately much like us with  Rask

  • Mind Bomb

    hoolihan Mind Bomb rustynail MaxwellHowe  Ok cool I just wanted to make sure, before I start spewing my mouth of here at work,  Telling the redwing fans at work here we are in on hossa :)))

  • Knights2Leafs

    The old days of Crabb, Boyce, Devereaux, Newbury et al on our 4th line is starting to look good in insight.

    Oh, and Johnny Malkin.

  • Airfreshener

    Mind Bomb hoolihan rustynail MaxwellHowe We’re in on Hossa?

  • Mind Bomb

    TheCanucksnaphook MaxwellHowe Who are we to talk we got rid of MCABE and kept kaberle :)

  • Marleafs

    TheCanucksnaphook Its called a checking line. Its the only way the Leafs can even remotely THINK about winning. Our 3rd line goes up against their 1st, which means our 1st goes up against their 2nd and our 2nd goes up against their 3rd (unless the other team uses a checking line). If we went line for line, power against power we would be last in the league. As for the 4th line, RC thinks he needs face punchers to prevent the other team from running down our talented guys. It is sorta true, because as of right now I do not see any of our top 9 forwards standing up for the guy beside them (unless its Clarkson, but then again he would most likely just open his eyes real wide and stare the guy down).

  • Mind Bomb

    Airfreshener Mind Bomb hoolihan rustynail MaxwellHowe 

    No thats what I am telling the redwings fans, I have been asking them how Franzen is doing latley, remember they got rid of Hossa to sign Franzen :)

  • Greg Fenton

    TheCanucksnaphook Greg Fenton We don’t know what trade talks are going on. Maybe some GM’s he is talking too are asking for for picks, and if it isn’t a 2nd it will be a 1st…..

  • Mind Bomb

    Marleafs TheCanucksnaphook That works 42 games a year at home

  • Airfreshener

    Mind Bomb Airfreshener hoolihan rustynail MaxwellHowe forgot the button again… damnit AF

  • vinoa

    TheCanucksnaphook MaxwellHowe  Considering that it was the “Most meaningless and pointless collection of words in the history of sports journalism” I’d say he succeeded.

  • Marleafs

    Mind Bomb Marleafs TheCanucksnaphook Too many guys on here are hating on McClement. Last year you wanted to give him the Selke.