NHL Preview from The Sports Network |
Thursday, March 11th
(All times eastern)
Pittsburgh Penguins (16-44-6-4) at Toronto Maple Leafs (38-20-9-3), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Toronto Maple Leafs continue their battle for the top
spot in the Northeast Division tonight when they host the suddenly hot
Pittsburgh Penguins at Air Canada Centre.
Toronto has 88 points and is tied with Ottawa for first place in the division
and third in the Eastern Conference.
The new-look Leafs pounded the Florida Panthers, 5-0, at Air Canada Centre on
Tuesday. Before the game, the Maple Leafs acquired veteran center Ron Francis
from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick in
Francis, 41, has 546 goals and 1,242 assists for 1,788 points in his Hall of
Fame career. He ranks second only to Wayne Gretzky on the NHL's all-time
assist list, and is fourth in career points.
Ed Belfour made just 15 saves to earn his seventh shutout of season and Gary
Roberts scored twice.
Owen Nolan and Matthew Stajan both delivered a goal and an assist for the
Maple Leafs, who won for the fourth time in five games. Joe Nieuwendyk also
The Leafs, 20-11-2-2 at home this season, complete a six-game homestand
The Penguins, meanwhile, won their third straight game Tuesday night, as they
blanked the Dallas Stars, 4-0, at the Igloo.
Jean-Sebastien Aubin posted a career-high 45 saves for his first shutout of
the season. Aubin turned aside 11 shots in the first period, 14 in the second
and 20 more in the final frame to set a new franchise record for the most
saves in a shutout.
Matt Bradley recorded a goal and an assist for the Penguins, who won their
third straight game. Jonathan Sim, Aleksey Morozov and Mike Eastwood all added
a goal in the victory. Pittsburgh is now 5-2-1 in its last eight overall.
Pittsburgh has won three in a row for the first time since January 13-17 of
last season and tonight will try for their first four-game winning streak
since December 21-28, 2002.
The Maple Leafs have won five straight against Pittsburgh, including all three
meetings this season. The Penguins have also dropped two straight and four of
their last six in Toronto.
03/11 10:42:47 ET