Bruins vs. Maple Leafs Preview: Hooray for 7PM Starts!

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sport

Thank god the west coast trips are done

Just the Facts:

Game Time: 7:00 PM, TD Garden. TV Broadcast: NESN. Radio Broadcast: 98.5 The Sports Hub

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SBN Game SiteMaple Leafs vs Bruins coverage

Records: Bruins 29-14-2 vs. Maple Leafs 22-20-5

Leafs Lines:

James van Riemsdyk - Tyler Bozak - Phil Kessel
Nikolai Kulemin - Jay McClement - David Clarkson
Mason Raymond - Nazem Kadri - Joffrey Lupul
Carter Ashton - Colton Orr - Peter Holland
Morgan Rielly - Jake Gardiner
Dion Phaneuf - Carl Gunnarsson
Cody Franson - Tim Gleason
James Reimer
Jonathan Bernier

Bruins Lines:

Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Reilly Smith
Carl Soderberg - Ryan Spooner - Loui Eriksson
Shawn Thornton - Gregory Campbell - Daniel Paille
Zdeno Chara - Torey Krug
Matt Bartkowski - Johnny Boychuk
Adam McQuaid - Kevan Miller
Tuukka Rask
Chad Johnson

Preview:

Oh the Maple Leafs.

Basically: here are two charts that are pretty funny, if you're into schadenfreude and you're not a Leafs fan. The Leafs started the season shooting at an incredibly high percentage as a team, and with relatively good goaltending, that had them on pace for 100+ pts for a good chunk of the first month of the season. Somewhere along the way the wheels fell off (regression!!!) and suddenly, it's January 14 and the Leafs have only won FOUR games in regulation since November 1. If we judged standings based on ROW, the Leafs would be in 13th in the East. As it stands, they seem to be really good at the skills competition, so they currently sit in ninth - one point behind Detroit and Philly.

The reason the Leafs have half as many ROW as the Bruins could be....maybe it's because their first line center is Tyler Bozak. Or maybe it's because instead of icing one or fewer goons, they ice both Frazer McLaren AND Colton Orr on a regular basis. Or maybe they should have kept Mikhail Grabovski and Clarke MacArthur. You know, any one of those things may have helped.

Or maybe not. Who knows? I'm just a silly Boston sports fan.

Tonight looks to be interesting to say the least; Tuukka Rask will get the start in net vs. Toronto, Shawn Thornton and Loui Eriksson make their return to home ice, Patrice Bergeron, Dougie Hamilton, and Ryan Spooner all missed morning skate...will Spooner get sent down? Hopefully not.

Nothing like a week of West Coast games to make you appreciate a few on home ice. Or even in the home time zone.

NEVER FORGET:

Like I'm ever NOT going to use this:

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