Dallas at Toronto
When: 7:00 PM ET, Thursday, December 5, 2013
Where: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario
The Toronto Maple Leafs are in the midst of a five-game winless streak (0-3-2) as they enter one of the toughest stretches of their season. Toronto hosts the Dallas Stars on Thursday in the first meeting between the teams in over two years. The Maple Leafs have just two wins in regulation since the end of October, and the next seven teams they face are a combined 117-55-22, making it very difficult to envision Toronto halting its tailspin.
Dallas has points in its last four games (2-0-2) as it tries to climb into the Western Conference playoff picture. The Stars have played well on the road, improving to 9-6-0 after posting a 4-3 triumph in Chicago on Tuesday. Kari Lehtonen made 47 saves to halt a personal four-game winless streak and improve his save percentage to .928 this season.TV:
7 p.m. ET, FSN Southwest (Dallas)ABOUT THE STARS (13-9-4):
Tyler Seguin has missed two games with concussion-like symptoms but could be available for Thursday’s contest, which is great news for Dallas considering the center has 10 goals and 16 points in 16 career games against Toronto. Defenseman Aaron Rome was placed on injured reserve with a lower-body ailment, freeing up space for young blue-liners like Kevin Connauton and Jamie Oleksiak to see more ice time. Ryan Garbutt has recorded five of his seven points in the last four games.ABOUT THE MAPLE LEAFS (14-11-3):
Toronto has been alternating goaltenders during its winless streak, which makes Jonathan Bernier the likely starter Thursday. Bernier owns a .929 save percentage but has allowed at least four goals in each of his last three starts. Tyler Bozak left Tuesday’s game with an upper-body injury and is considered day-to-day, as is Joffrey Lupul, who skated Monday as he recovers from a strained groin.OVERTIME
1. The Maple Leafs have won their last two meetings with the Stars. The two teams have not done battle since Nov. 25, 2011.
2. Toronto’s penalty-killing unit has allowed 10 goals on 26 short-handed situations over the last seven contests. The Stars have scored only one goal in its last 15 power-play opportunities.
3. Stars captain Jamie Benn leads the team with 19 points in 15 road games.PREDICTION:
Stars 4, Maple Leafs 3
Stats and Records