Toronto at Detroit
When: 7:30 PM ET, Friday, December 15, 2017
Where: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, Michigan
The Toronto Maple Leafs hope to rebound from being shut out for the first time this campaign and avoid a season high-tying three-game losing streak when they visit the struggling Detroit Red Wings on Friday. The Maple Leafs, who are seventh in the league in scoring (3.21 goals), suffered a 2-0 loss at Minnesota on Thursday and have scored just three goals in their last three games.
One of the reasons for Toronto's offensive struggles is the absence of leading scorer Auston Matthews (26 points), who has missed the last three contests with an upper-body injury and is questionable for Friday. The Red Wings have been earning points of late but have managed just one victory over their last 11 games (1-5-5) after coughing up a late lead and dropping a 3-2 overtime decision to Boston on Wednesday. Dylan Larkin snapped his 10-game goal-scoring drought last time out, but Detroit lost for the sixth straight time after regulation. “We have been doing a lot of really good things,” Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader told the Detroit Free Press. “We are right there. We just have to find a way, whether it’s score that extra goal or keep that extra goal out of our net, and win these games and go on a run.”TV:
7:30 p.m. ET, TSN4 (Toronto), FSN DetroitABOUT THE MAPLE LEAFS (20-12-1):
Second-leading scorer Nazem Kadri is mired in a six-game point drought despite registering 20 shots in that span, while William Nylander has managed just one in his last six contests. James van Riemsdyk was kept off the scoresheet Thursday but has recorded three goals in his last six games and leads the team with 15 - two more than Kadri and Matthews. The power play has struggled of late, converting just once in 14 attempts over the last six contests after registering only four shots while going 0-for-4 against Minnesota.ABOUT THE RED WINGS (11-13-7):
Larkin leads the team with 24 points (19 assists) and Anthony Mantha (team-best 12 goals) is next with 22, but he has been kept off the scoresheet in five straight games. Defenseman Mike Green had a fast start to the season with 11 points in the first nine games but has been limited to seven in the last 22 and has managed just one in his last 12 contests. Detroit is just 1-for-16 on the power play in five games this month but still was in the top 10 in the league entering Thursday (20.4 percent) despite being near the bottom in overall scoring at 2.61 goals per game.OVERTIME
1. The Maple Leafs have won five straight in the all-time series between the Original Six rivals, including a 6-3 triumph at home on Oct. 18.
2. Toronto C Patrick Marleau has scored 519 career goals and trails Pat Verbeek by three for 36th place on the all-time list.
3. Five of Detroit LW Tomas Tatar’s nine goals have come on the power play, including one on Wednesday.PREDICTION:
Maple Leafs 5, Red Wings 3
Stats and Records