MAPLE LEAFS (27-21-5) at JETS (23-24-5)
Last 10: Toronto 6-4-0; Winnipeg 4-6-0
Season series: This is the first of two games between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Winnipeg Jets. The Maple Leafs won their most recent meeting on March 16, 2013, as defenseman Zach Bogosian scored in the 10th round of a shootout.
Big story: Both teams look to get back on track after road losses Thursday ended lengthy winning streaks. Toronto had won a season-high six games in a row before a 7-1 loss to the Dallas Stars; the Jets had won four straight prior to a 1-0 loss to the San Jose Sharks.
Maple Leafs: A win in Winnipeg would give Toronto a successful 3-1-0 trip as it battles for positioning in the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference standings.
"We've been playing well as a team and there's gonna be games like this throughout the year. But we still got a chance Saturday night to make this a really good road trip so we have to put this one behind us and focus on Winnipeg," center Tyler Bozak said.
Coach Randy Carlyle emphasized the need to not let one defeat snowball into multiple losses. The Maple Leafs have four losing streaks of three games or more this season.
"We have a rebound game [in Winnipeg] Saturday night. We've got to gather our group back and get some consistency back in our game here in a short time frame, to get back to playing the way we are capable of playing," Carlyle said.
Jets: The loss in San Jose was the first under coach Paul Maurice. The Jets had won four games in a row since he took over as coach Jan. 12.
"He's a good coach, he's proven that over his career," defenseman Jacob Trouba said. "I think he's brought some more intensity and energy to our team and I think we've responded to that."
The Jets return home to face the Maple Leafs after a tough two games in Anaheim and San Jose, and Maurice was happy with the effort despite the loss Thursday.
"I really like the potential of our group. … They listen, they do what you ask them to do, they try hard, so I'm excited about this team going forward," Maurice said, assessing the Jets' first five games with him as coach.
Who's hot: Maple Leafs forward Phil Kessel has four goals in five games. … Jets forward Bryan Little has eight points in six games and Trouba has three goals in four games.
Injury report: The Maple Leafs have three forwards on injured reserve: David Clarkson (elbow), Trevor Smith (hand) and Dave Bolland (ankle). … The Jets are without forwards Jim Slater (hernia), Matt Halischuk (forearm) and Grant Clitsome (back) and defenseman Paul Postma (blood clot).
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