The Toronto Maple Leafs are back for another season, and excitement is growing for what this season could bring, especially from some of the newcomers who were acquired in the off-season. The Leafs will look to have a strong season and translate that to playoff success as Brad Treliving begins his first season with the Leafs. We will take a look at their lineup for tonight’s preseason game as well as point out a few things to watch for in tonight’s game as the Leafs rematch against the Senators.
Leafs Projected Lineup
Bertuzzi – Matthews – Marner
Abruzzese – Holmberg – Robertson
Gregor – Kampf – Reaves
Blandisi – Cowan – Tverberg
McCabe – Klingberg
Giordano – Kokkinen
Rifai – Niemela
Chadwick – Pietroniro
Five Things to Look Out For
Tonight marks the start of the Bertuzzi Matthews Marner line. Bertuzzi was brought in this past off-season, and immediately, for good reason, everyone penciled him in with Matthews and Marner. It seems as if Keefe is also penciling him in that slot on the first line, as he opened training camp with the two stars and is projected to play with them tonight as well. Bertuzzi was brought in to add more energy to the team and replace some of the scoring that was lost in free agency this past offseason. Bertuzzi will look to be an important contributor this season while staying healthy in hopes of landing himself a new contract with more term.
Ryan Reaves has been in many headlines and social media feeds ever since signing with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Reaves is known for his fighting and big personality and has gone on record to say he plans to bring that energy to Toronto. Reaves will look to also help contribute off the ice by arranging more team activities and being vocal in the dressing room. Reaves is not known for his speed but has mentioned that he has adapted his training to help him keep up against other NHL teams. Time will tell if Reaves is able to keep up on this Leafs team, but the Reavo era begins tonight.
Noah Gregor came into the Leafs camp on a professional tryout agreement and is hoping to win a contract with the Leafs by the end of training camp, as we saw happen with Aston-Reese last year. Gregor is a feisty forward who has great bursts of speed. His energy and speed should help boost the fourth line, but with many forwards battling for one or two open roster spots, he will need to have a solid camp and some strong preseason performances, including tonight, as he gets a shot to play with Reaves and Kampf.
Nick Robertson has been forgotten or written off by many Leafs fans, but the biggest issue with him isn’t his skill but rather his availability. Robertson still boasts a killer shot and has a lot of potential as a prospect. Robertson is still relatively young as well, at 22 years old. Last year, he had an impressive preseason, and he will look to do the same again this year in hopes of landing himself a spot on the roster. Robertson could pair well into the second or third line but starts tonight on what looks to be a potential Marlies first line with Holmberg and Abruzzese. It’s up to Robertson to earn his spot on the NHL roster and prove that he’s still a key part of the future of the Leafs.
It looks as if Joseph Woll will start tonight’s game. After being injured for the second half of the 2021-2022 season, Woll came back and had a stellar 2022-2023 season between the Leafs and Marlies and will look to continue to build off of that into the 2023-2024 season. As Keefe has said, Woll has fast-tracked his development and will look to continue to prove he is an everyday NHL goaltender ready for a consistent backup role and maybe to even steal some games off Samsonov.
Tonight’s game starts at 7:00 PM EST on Sportsnet!
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