The Toronto Maple Leafs and their penalty kill get set to take on the Tampa Bay Lighting tonight. It’s the start of a long January home stand which sees the Leafs try and turn around a slide that has taken them from 6th to 10th in only 3 games. PoorÂ discipline and one of the worst penalty kills the NHL has seen in recent history have lost Toronto 3 games they could ofâ€”and should have won.
Jonas Gustavsson gets the start in goal, and hopes to continue his play that saw him getting in a good groove before he was sat in favour of a struggling James Reimer. He probably should have started in Winnipeg, but curious coaching decisions are curious coaching decisions.
Tampa Bay is hoping that their club’s perfect three-game homestand does more than get the Lightning back to .500. One of the more disappointing clubs at the onset of the season, the Lightning look to win for the sixth time in eight games this evening and extend the recent struggles of the Toronto Maple Leafs.After coming within one game of reaching the Stanley Cup Finals a season ago, Tampa Bay is currently 12th overall in the Eastern Conference and sits 10 points behind first-place Florida in the Southeast Division.
The last match-up saw Toronto come at Tampa Bay fast and furious, getting in behind their defence early by shifting their speed game into gear. Once Toronto had the lead, they kept on pouring on the pressure and thumped Tampa 7-1â€”their worst loss of the season.
Tampa is sure to remember the loss and will look to prove a point (or two).
Update via @jonasTSN1050:
Lines vs. TB: