Leafs at Tampa, 7pm, TSN.
Every now and then, I get a hate-on for a Leaf player. John Mitchell is one of those players.
Ok hate is a bit strong. I just dislike him substantially.
I dislike his sub-mediocre scoring touch. I dislike his allergic reaction to physical play. I dislike that I can almost skate better than him. I dislike that he's a poster boy for this team of useless 3rd liners. Mostly though, I dislike his fricken terrible play through the neutral zone and I'm guessing that since he's a healthy scratch tonight that Ron Wilson finally agrees with that last one. Maybe it was Mitchell's giveaway in the neutral zone that lead to the go-ahead goal in Atlanta that finally broke Wilson's will with this kid? I just hope we don't have to see him again for a while, if ever.
In the line-up comes Wayne Primeau, who, unlike Mitchell is a 3rd liner not because he's mediocre in every way, but because he's mediocre in every way except killing penalties and taking defensive faceoffs in the Leafs zone. That makes him better, in my books.
Gustavsson is also back in. He won his last game in Nashville and all we can ask from him is to not allow innocent shots from the blue line to rattle through his equipment as if he were a Happy Days pinball machine. They end up in the net and you Vesa Toskala end up on the bench.
I'll still call a Leafs win. Only because Tampa suck just a bit less than us and Toronto actually had a day off yesterday during this ridiculous January schedule.
Sens preview after the jump...
St Louis at Ottawa, 7pm, SNE
The Sens are 5-5 in their last 10 games, but since the most recent 4 are wins, it's all puppy dogs and rainbows again for Sens fans.
THM, if you want to write in something here be my guest. I don't have anything to say about this game other than I guess the Blues have a bunch of ex-Leafs on the team and I don't think I can handle the candy apple mood around here tomorrow if the Sens win 5 straight, so lets call this one 4-1 for the Blues. Colaiacovo has potted a pair before you can say Coco Puffs.