banner

NHL

more stats

NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, March 25th (All times Eastern)

St. Louis Blues (48-16-7) at Toronto Maple Leafs (36-29-8), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - With a playoff spot hanging in the balance, the Toronto Maple Leafs desperately need to put an end to their worst drought of the season.

Toronto hopes to end a string of five straight losses when it hosts the playoff-bound St. Louis Blues in Tuesday's battle at Air Canada Centre.

The Maple Leafs have matched their longest losing streak of the season, but while the club was able to record two points during an 0-3-2 stretch from Nov. 25-Dec. 3, the current slide has come with five consecutive regulation setbacks.

As a result, Toronto enters Tuesday tied with Detroit for the Eastern Conference's two wild card spots. Meanwhile, Washington is just one point behind and Columbus is a mere two points in back of the Leafs and Red Wings. All four teams play this evening, with Detroit visiting Columbus and the Capitals hosting Los Angeles.

Making matters worse for Toronto, the club only has nine games left on its regular season schedule. That gives Detroit and the Blue Jackets two games in hand over the Leafs, while Washington has one.

The Maple Leafs also have fallen seven points behind Montreal and Tampa Bay, who are tied for the last two of the Atlantic Division's three automatic playoff bids.

The Blues, meanwhile, have already clinched a playoff spot out West and they enter Tuesday with a six-point lead over Chicago for the Central Division title. St. Louis also is two ahead of San Jose for the conference lead and trails Boston by one point for the best record in the NHL.

Toronto hopes to have No. 1 goaltender Jonathan Bernier back from a groin injury tonight. All five of the club's losses on its current skid have come with backup James Reimer as the starter, but Bernier has been skating and figures to be a game-time decision for Tuesday.

"It's too early to say if I'm coming back (Tuesday)," Bernier said. "I don't want to rush and be out another four or five days."

Reimer was pulled from Sunday's 3-2 loss in New Jersey after allowing three goals on 10 shots. Drew MacIntyre entered the game early in the second period and made 14 saves the rest of the way.

MacIntyre, a 30-year-old journeyman, made his fifth NHL appearance and first since Nov. 25, 2011.

Phil Kessel and Tyler Bozak supplied the goals for the Maple Leafs, who last dropped six in a row from Feb. 18-29, 2012.

"We have to come together as a team and battle," Bozak said.

Toronto hopes to get back on track with a stretch of home games coming up. The Leafs will play five of their next six as the host before ending the regular season on a three-game road trip.

The Leafs are 22-13-1 at home this season and 14-16-7 on the road.

In addition to Bernier, Toronto also could get defenseman Paul Ranger back tonight. Ranger has missed the last two games with a neck injury.

St. Louis will try to earn a split of a four-game road trip on Tuesday. The Blues opened the swing with losses in Chicago and Philadelphia before notching a 1-0 win Sunday at Pittsburgh.

Brian Elliott stopped all 33 shots he faced as St. Louis turned in a textbook defensive effort to down the Penguins at CONSOL Energy Center. Elliott's whitewash was his fourth of the season and his 16th with the franchise, tying him with Hall of Fame netminder Glenn Hall for second on the club's all-time list.

"I saw a lot [of shots]. Obviously, the ones I didn't, the guys were blocking and made big sacrifices in front of me," Elliott said.

David Backes recorded the lone score of the contest for the Blues, who won for the ninth time in 12 March outings.

St. Louis is 23-11-3 as the visiting team this season.

The Blues posted a 6-3 home win against Toronto on Dec. 12, giving the Blues a 4-0-2 record in the last six games of this series. St. Louis had won six straight in Toronto before the Leafs notched a 6-5 shootout win in the last meeting at Air Canada Centre on Jan. 6, 2011.

Ryan Miller will resume his starting role in net for St. Louis on Tuesday. He is 7-2-1 with a 2.03 goals against average since joining the Blues before the trade deadline.

03/25 10:51:50 ET

Other Stories

Hurricanes

Hurricanes stifled by Sharks rookie in 2-0 loss
Hurricanes place Bellemore on IR, recall Jordan from Charlotte

The Carolina Hurricanes have placed defenseman Brett Bellemore on injured reserve with a lower-body injury, the team announced Tuesday.

Related Stories
  • NFL: Chicago at Detroit

    Thursday at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Philadelphia at Dallas

    Thursday at 4:00 pm on FOX50

  • SEC: Arkansas at Missouri

    Friday at 2:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • HSFB: Football Friday with Tom Suiter

    Friday at 11:35 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: Duke vs. Furman

    Tomorrow at 5:00 pm on 620am

  • CBB: NC State vs. Richmond

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • NHL: Hurricanes at Florida

    Tomorrow at 7:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions

    Thursday at 12:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
7:00pm Tonight
CIN
NCCU
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAS
ATL
7:30pm Tonight
MIA
GSW
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
DET
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
SAC
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
CHI
7:00pm Tonight
UMO
OHIO
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
Final
ELON 74
MRGST 73
 
2nd
MIZZ 45
PURD 64
 
2nd
MAR 30
HAW 41
 
4:00pm Today
UNF
LIB
 
4:30pm Today
CHAM
BYU
4:30pm Today
BUCK
MDES
4:30pm Today
UGST
WCU
6:00pm Tonight
UWGB
EVAN
7:00pm Tonight
ARST
ALA
7:00pm Tonight
OHIO
ARKPB
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNH
BU
 
7:00pm Tonight
OU
CHIST
7:00pm Tonight
TOL
DET
7:00pm Tonight
CLMB
FD
 
7:00pm Tonight
QUIN
HART
 
7:00pm Tonight
SFLA
HOF
7:00pm Tonight
HARV
HOU
7:00pm Tonight
BONA
JST
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJOE
LIU
 
7:00pm Tonight
SYR
GHND
 
7:00pm Tonight
MLOWELL
MTIDA
 
7:00pm Tonight
CIN
NCCU
 
7:00pm Tonight
VT
NIOWA
7:00pm Tonight
WOFF
OHVALLEY
 
7:00pm Tonight
TEMPL
PENN
7:00pm Tonight
RUTG
PETE
7:00pm Tonight
BGU
SEMIZ
7:00pm Tonight
LAS
Terriers
 
7:00pm Tonight
UVA
TENST
7:00pm Tonight
KENT
TXARL
7:00pm Tonight
FSU
CITA
7:00pm Tonight
PBY
TOCC
 
7:00pm Tonight
COOK
TENNM
 
7:00pm Tonight
WMARY
WILL
7:00pm Tonight
USB
WKENT
 
7:00pm Tonight
HIGH
WMPEACE
 
7:30pm Tonight
PSU
AKR
7:30pm Tonight
SMU
ARK
7:30pm Tonight
ARMY
BING
 
7:30pm Tonight
CSOU
CARK
 
7:30pm Tonight
UMBC
HOW
 
7:30pm Tonight
ARZ
KYST
7:30pm Tonight
OREG
VCU
8:00pm Tonight
SCST
CIU
 
8:00pm Tonight
CREI
EILL
8:00pm Tonight
ALAAM
JVST
 
8:00pm Tonight
ABCHRIST
JCHR
 
8:00pm Tonight
TXSA
LOYC
8:00pm Tonight
NDST
MNCROOK
 
8:00pm Tonight
NEB
NEOM
8:00pm Tonight
VANDY
NORST
 
8:00pm Tonight
STLU
NCAT
 
8:00pm Tonight
MTST
NARZ
8:00pm Tonight
TTU
NWST
 
8:00pm Tonight
TULA
SOUTH
 
8:00pm Tonight
ILLCH
STXAVIER
 
8:00pm Tonight
TEX
RFLSH
8:00pm Tonight
BRAD
TAMCC
 
8:00pm Tonight
SMISS
TROY
8:05pm Tonight
DRAK
IUPUI
8:05pm Tonight
ARKST
LAM
 
8:30pm Tonight
FLGC
USF
9:00pm Tonight
COL
AFA
9:00pm Tonight
IDAHO
BSU
9:00pm Tonight
GRCN
BUF
 
9:00pm Tonight
ORU
LALAF
9:00pm Tonight
CHAR
MIAMI
9:30pm Tonight
ISU
MD
9:30pm Tonight
UMO
NW
10:00pm Tonight
SDST
PITT
10:00pm Tonight
MICH
VILL
10:05pm Tonight
SACST
BRISTOL
 
11:00pm Tonight
USC
CSFU
11:00pm Tonight
STAN
DEL
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
WIN
8:00pm Tonight
NAS
LOS
8:00pm Tonight
STL
OTT
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
EDM
9:00pm Tonight
ARI
COL
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
CAL
10:00pm Tonight
VAN
NJD