Leafs-Jets Game Day preview

Leafs-Jets Game Day (7:00PM ET, CBC, TSN 1050 Radio)

James Reimer, a native of Morweena, Manitoba will start in net tonight against the Winnipeg Jets. In 8 career appearances versus the Winnipeg/Atlanta franchise, Reimer has a career record of 3-2-1 with a goals against average of 2.43 and a save percentage of .921

The Leafs will face their former bench boss Paul Maurice, who coached in Toronto for one season with the AHL Marlies (2005-06, 41-29-10), before taking the reins with the NHL club for the next two years. Maurice posted a 76-66-22 mark in 164 games with the Maple Leafs. He made history on November 28, 2010 with Carolina, becoming the youngest coach in league history to reach 1,000 games. Maurcie broke into the coaching ranks at age 28 with the Hartford Whalers. The Jets have posted a 4-1-0 record since he took over from Claude Noel.

One positive area of consistency for the Leafs over the past 7 games, including the dreadful 7-1 drubbing against Dallas, is the production from their defencemen. Toronto has received a total of six goals and 12 assists from the blueline over that stretch. Carl Gunnarsson had a great chance to extend the team’s defence goal-scoring streak to six games on Thursday. His point shot deflected off Nikolai Kulemin for the team’s only goal. It’s a nice change of pace for one-time Norris Trophy winner Randy Carlyle’s squad that went the first 31 games of the season with only four goals by defencemen, one of them being an empty-netter by Paul Ranger.

TMLfans.ca made the rounds on Twitter during Thursday’s Leafs loss to the Stars. With Justin Bieber’s mug shot displayed on the American Airlines Center scoreboard – on the same night that Jeopardy made Rob Ford a question to an embarrassing answer – it was a hat trick of shame for Toronto.

Rob Del Mundo is the author of Off The Post, and is a regular columnist at TMLfans.ca