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Photo Credit: Tom Szczerbowski / USA TODAY Sports

LGD: Sparks Fly to Chicago

Last night was ugly, disappointing, and embarrassing. To lose against the team that everyone is picking to be last in the league, the team that is laughed about just at the thought of their owner is a very bad look.

Let’s move past that and focus on the new opponent tonight, the Chicago Blackhawks.

A Blackhawks team that is winning games when they were expected not to, they might bring a surprise for this Leafs team. You can never underestimate a team with Toews, Kane, and Keith.

The Leafs might be in a battle, or they might bounceback from a disappointing loss last night and come out all guns blazing – we’re hoping for the latter.

Leafs Lines

LW C RW
Patrick Marleau
PATRICK MARLEAU
Auston Matthews
AUSTON MATTHEWS
Tyler Ennis
TYLER ENNIS
Zach Hyman
ZACH HYMAN
John Tavares
JOHN TAVARES
Mitch Marner
MITCH MARNER
Josh Leivo
JOSH LEIVO
Nazem Kadri
NAZEM KADRI
Connor Brown
CONNOR BROWN
Andreas Johnsson
ANDREAS JOHNSSON
Par Lindholm
PAR LINDHOLM
Kasperi Kapanen
KASPERI KAPANEN
LD RD
Morgan Rielly
MORGAN RIELLY
Ron Hainsey
RON HAINSEY
Jake Gardiner
JAKE GARDINER
Nikita Zaitsev
NIKITA ZAITSEV
Travis Dermott
TRAVIS DERMOTT
Igor Ozhiganov
IGOR OZHIGANOV
STARTER BACKUP
Garret Sparks
GARRET SPARKS
Frederik Andersen
FREDERIK ANDERSEN

There is nothing really more to say about the Leafs’ forward lines at this point. They are well balanced and extremely deep. But they are still missing one other right-wing that can be a monster at even-strength – and is blonde.

We can probably place our life savings on a bet that Tavares or Matthews will score at least one goal tonight.

The controversial blueline returns and so will most fan’s doubt about this team’s true potential. They played extremely poorly last night and a couple of them earned the direct blame for a couple of Sens goals. Just be solid and let the forwards do what they can do.

Chosen backup Garret Sparks will be starting his first game of the season tonight. Choosing him caused the team to lose both Curtis McElhinney and Calvin Pickard to waivers, so no pressure kid.

Blackhawks Lines

LW C RW
Alex DeBrincat
ALEX DEBRINCAT
Jonathan Toews
JONATHAN TOEWS
Dominik Kahun
DOMINIK KAHUN
Brandon Saad
BRANDON SAAD
Nick Schmaltz
NICK SCHMALTZ
Patrick Kane
PATRICK KANE
Chris Kunitz
CHRIS KUNITZ
Artem Anisimov
ARTEM ANISIMOV
David Kampf
DAVID KAMPF
Marcus Kruger
MARCUS KRUGER
Luke Johnson
LUKE JOHNSON
Andreas Martinsen
ANDREAS MARTINSEN
LD RD
Duncan Keith
DUNCAN KEITH
Henri Jokiharju
HENRI JOKIHARJU
Brent Seabrook
BRENT SEABROOK
Brandon Manning
BRANDON MANNING
Erik Gustafsson
ERIK GUSTAFSSON
Jan Rutta
JAN RUTTA
STARTER BACKUP
Anton Forsberg
ANTON FORSBERG
Cam Ward
CAM WARD

The aging Blackhawks got an injection of youth for this upcoming season. Nick Schmaltz earned his spot in the top-6 last year, playing alongside the big guns and not looking out of place. Rookie Dominik Kahun has been highly talked about as an underrated winger by many people that was able to see him play in the German DEL last year. The 23-year-old can be a solid secondary scoring piece for the Blackhawks this year.

Within their forwards there are well-known names, but also Luke Johnson is for sure someone made up.

On the blueline, there are super old mainstays like Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook, but rookie Henri Jokiharju has certainly impressed in his first two games. The 19-year-old had to prove his stay or go back to the WHL, he has not looked out of place on the side of Keith.

Overall, it will be depth that eventually kills this Blackhawks team. There are forwards and defencemen that are top-line worthy, but then there is the bottom-six forwards and bottom-pairing defencemen. It will be an interesting year for this team.

Also they suck. Boo.

Preview

The Leafs are lucky that this game is just a short 24 hours after that horrible performance against the Senators last night. They can put all worries to bed by absolutely destroying this Blackhawks team.

Chicago played all-balls-out against the St. Louis Blues last night, now they will have to face another forward powerhouse team in the Leafs. Let’s hope they stumble and fall when they just look into the eyes of Auston.

This is going to be entertaining.

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