Toronto looks to continue its strong play against the Florida Panthers at home when the teams meet for the first time this season Tuesday night.
The Maple Leafs (9-4-1) fell 7-0 to Boston at Air Canada Centre on Saturday, getting shut out for the first time and allowing their most goals of the season.
Florida (6-4-3), meanwhile, dropped shootouts in all three games of a homestand that ended with Sunday’s 4-3 loss to Tampa Bay. The Panthers led 3-0 after one period.
The home team won all four meetings last season between these clubs, and Toronto has earned at least one point in 10 of the past 14 matchups at Air Canada Centre.
The Panthers will start a two-game trip as they again match up against one of the NHL’s leaders in goals. They will try to slow down Phil Kessel(notes), who is tied with the Lightning’s Steve Stamkos with 10 goals and leads the league with 21 points.
Toronto’s problems have been on the defensive end, with a league-worst 70.9 percent penalty kill. The Maple Leafs’ power play has also been poor at 15.2 percent.
“It’s something that we’re focused on both parts of our specials teams, we’re working on it ad nauseum watching countless video,” coach Ron Wilson said. “And at some point it’s going to click in, I hope.”
“Obviously I expect a lot of myself and want to get better,” Schenn said. “I want to help the team as much as possible.”
Toronto’s Jonas Gustavsson(notes) will get another start replacing James Reimer(notes), out with concussion-like symptoms. Gustavsson’s 3.68 goals-against average is ahead of only Columbus’ Steve Mason(notes) for the worst among qualifying goaltenders.
“I don’t like to say where my game is and stuff like that,” Gustavsson said. “It’s just about going out there and doing everything you can.”
The Panthers have grown accustomed to tight finishes with six straight one-goal games, with blown third-period leads in two of the last three.
“A little bit of the same old story for us,” said coach Kevin Dineen about Sunday’s defeat. “When you’re up 3-0 you like to close that door. Instead, we found a way to lose.”