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Toronto Maple Leafs finally realizing the importance of toughness, make lineup change


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Matt Garland
October 21, 2022  (3:43 PM)
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The Toronto Maple Leafs will be adding some truckulence, and grit to their lineup for Saturday's game against the Winnipeg Jets. Head Coch Sheldon Keefe confirmed that forward Wayne Simmonds will be making his season debut.

The 34-year-old from Scarborough, Ont., is in his second year with the Maple Leafs following a stint with the Buffalo Sabres (2019), New Jersey Devils (2019), Nashville Predators and nine seasons with the Philadelphia Flyers (2011-18).
Simmonds skated in 72 games for the Maple Leafs last season, scoring five goals and recording 16 points.
Nicolas Aube-Kubel will draw out of the lineup.
If the Dallas Stars' game is any indication of the types of games the Maple Leafs can expect, they will need to have someone on the ice who can stand up for the team's star players.
There were multiple instances in last nights' game where Auston Matthews got roughed up. He was cross-checked late in the second period with no call. He got high-sticked in the face with no call. He was tackled in the third period.
The underlying numbers for the fourth line consisting of David Kampf, Nicolas Aube-Kubel and Zach Aston-Reese have not been good. The pair of Aube-Kubel and Aston-Reese are running in the area of 30 percent for Shot Attempts, 33 percent for Shots, 22 percent for Expected Goals, 30 percent for Scoring Chances, and a dismal 15 percent for High-Danger Chances. They have been been on ice for a combined five High-Danger Scoring Chances For and a terrifying 29 High-Danger Chances Against.
With the Leafs hitting the road for the next five games, they will be at a disadvantage for line matching. The opposing team can put out whoever they desire against the Maple Leafs' top players. You can be sure that liberties will be taken.
Hopefully with the insertion of Simmonds, the fourth line can get going. The line is designed to make life difficult for the opposition and that just hasn't happened enough this season.
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21 OCTOBRE   |   191 ANSWERS
Toronto Maple Leafs finally realizing the importance of toughness, make lineup change

Which Maple Leaf player has been the most disappointing so far this season?

Matt Murray9549.7 %
Nicolas Aube-Kubel2814.7 %
Pierre Engvall4624.1 %
Zach Aston-Reese2211.5 %
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