Morning Mashup: Game Day in Buffalo

Sabres vs Leafs

Toronto will be without Clarke McArthur as they visit the Buffalo Sabres. The injury to his pinky finger won’t sideline him for long but it does leave the Leafs‘ LW depth, already missing Lupul, looking thin for tonight.

The Sabres, like the Leafs, are not exactly hot. They have lost three straight and Thomas Vanek was sidelined by a strained muscle in Sunday’s 3-2 loss in Washington. The left winger had been on the ice for all 11 of his team’s goals prior to that contest, scoring three and assisting on six – one versus the Maple Leafs.

Vanek has 16 goals and 13 assists in 24 career home meetings with Toronto, including 18 points during the Sabres’ current 10-1-0 stretch at home against their Northeast Division rival. Needless to say, he’s a big component of their team.

Toronto looks to rebound after their awful outing against the New York Rangers.

Update from Jonas Siegal:

– Clarke MacArthur (finger) and Mike Komisarek (eye) will not play Tuesday. MacArthur had the nail torn off his pinky finger against the Rangers on Saturday and will sit as a precaution. Komisarek meanwhile, suffered a freak injury to his eye at the end of Monday’s practice. Somehow a chip of fiberglass ended up in the eyeball requiring a suture for the wound. While he was cleared to play, Komisarek will sit as a precaution. Randy Carlyle wouldn’t reveal exactly how the injury happened, but said it was ”one of those things in your life that you’d like to take back in your life I think, when you do something stupid.”

– *Jake Gardiner is an option on the Leafs defence, but might be on the outside looking in. Gardiner looked predictably off his game upon returning from a concussion last week. ”I don’t think there’s any pressure on us to play Jake Gardiner,” said Carlyle, asked about the need to get the 22-year-old back on track with game action. ”It’s a coach’s decision whether he plays or doesn’t play.” Gardiner played in one game with the Marlies, but was recalled back to the Leafs because of the AHL All-Star break. Carlyle said the organization had the option of returning him to the Marlies later in the week.

– James Reimer makes his second consecutive start in goal.

Tuesday’s Projected Lines

van Riemsdyk – Bozak – Kessel
Kulemin – Grabovski – McClement
Frattin – Kadri – Komarov
Brown – Steckel – Orr

Phaneuf – Kostka
Gunnarsson – Liles
Fraser – Franson
* Gardiner


Tuesday morning links…

Siegel: Reimer looking to quiet questions in goal
Jonas Siegel with a good bit on Reimer trying to silence his (many) doubters.

Hamilton Scores Winner, Eakins Gets Win
The Toronto Marlies were well represented at the AHL All-Star game; Hamilton scored a hat-trick, got the game winner and earned the MVP honours. The Western Conference won with Dallas Eakins behind the bench as coach.

Leafs’ James van Riemsdyk moves up to the top line
McArthur’s finger injury pushes JVR up to the top line. At least for now.

An old Maple Leaf I really loved and wore the crest proudly: Jim Dorey
Michael Langois with a trip down memory lane.

It’s All In The Details
PPP with some video break-down of the NYR game.

Joffrey Lupul’s Injury Is A Good Thing
Why losing a 6’1 200lbs PPG forward from your 1st line is a good thing. No… really.

From MLHS yesterday:

Leafs Prospect Update – January 28
Curt with his regular MLHS prospects update.

Leafs Notebook – January 28
Anthony with his always-excellent Leafs Notebook.

Leafs Videos
Videos from Carlyle, Fraser, JVR and Reimer.

NHL Links:

Comparables for Subban’s new contract
 No, there will be no offer sheets. Sportsnet looks at comparables for Subban’s new contract.

Galchenyuk, Gallagher stick with Habs after impressive start
 Five games in and the Habs decide to keep two prospects for the season. Curious to see how they fare after 40+ more games.

Johnson earns first NHL shutout in Coyotes debut (Yahoo! Sports)
Thursday’s 3 stars from Yahoo!

Sidney Crosby Interview with HNIC Radio
 Only North American IP’s can listen or watch. Caution: auto-on.

League scores from last night (28th)