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3 classics on the Maple Leafs’ schedule to keep an eye out for in 2023-24

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Nick Alberga
7 months ago
Whether you’re a CFL fan or not, you know the Labour Day Classic is arguably the most anticipated game of every regular season.
And very seldom does it disappoint.
In the NHL world, there’s no question there are some games that stick out – for one reason or another – more than others. With that in mind, I pinpointed three potential classics on the Toronto Maple Leafs’ 82-game regular season slate:

 Monday, October 16th – Chicago Blackhawks @ Toronto Maple Leafs

For the first time in his career, the Connor Bedard show will roll into Scotiabank Arena. For several years now, the North Vancouver native has been touted as the next one, so now, NHL fans will get to see first-hand what he’s all about. Furthermore, it seems like every time Toronto and Chicago get together, it’s utter chaos. Remember those first few Auston Matthews/Patrick Kane clashes?

Thursday, December 14th – Columbus Blue Jackets @ Toronto Maple Leafs

 There’s no question Mitch Marner, among others, will almost certainly have this one circled. Mike Babcock, who was fired by Toronto in November of 2019, will make his highly anticipated return to the Big Smoke. Unfortunately, in the months and years following his dismissal, some revolting things came out about his alleged treatment of players and staff. Well, for some reason, Columbus thought they had to have him, so here we are. The building should be buzzing.

Saturday, December 16th – Pittsburgh Penguins @ Toronto Maple Leafs

The storyline writes itself: Kyle Dubas’ return. And to boot, the game’s on a Saturday night. You think NHL schedule makers knew what they were doing, or what? Of course, following a bizarre chain of events, the 37-year-old was unceremoniously fired in May following another ugly playoff exit for the Maple Leafs. Suffice it is to say, he’s landed on his feet (and then some) as the President and GM of the Penguins. Personally, I can’t wait for the potential video tribute and the constant iso shots of Dubas and Brendan Shanahan. Should be a good one.

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