|NYI||0||0||0||0||1 (2 - 3)||3|
|TOR||0||0||0||0||0 (1 - 3)||2|
The Toronto Maple Leafs have struggled at home lately, but they're hoping a meeting with a New York Islanders team they've dominated there will help them end their woes.
The Maple Leafs (27-22-7) look to avoid another defeat at the Air Canada Centre, and continue their mastery of the Islanders (26-22-8), when the teams meet Tuesday night.
Despite having a winning overall record, Toronto is 11-12-4 at home. Only league-worst Philadelphia (five) has fewer home victories than the Leafs, who are tied with three teams at 11.
Toronto has dropped four of its last five at the Air Canada Centre, including a 6-5 overtime defeat to Pittsburgh on Saturday. The Leafs erased a 3-0 deficit and scored five times in the final two periods, taking the lead in the third, but Pittsburgh got the equalizer with 6:11 left and Jordan Staal completed his hat trick in the extra period.
"We showed a lot of character coming back after two periods, and then it was pond hockey in the third," Maple Leafs coach Paul Maurice told the team's official Web site. "Overtime, we're still trying to piece that together. We did a good job responding, fighting back for it, but the one chance was the other way."
As poorly as Toronto has played at the Air Canada Centre of late, it's had little trouble with the Islanders. The Leafs have won five straight at home against New York, and are 15-3-0 with one tie in the last 18 matchups in Toronto.
The Leafs are 6-0-1 in the last seven overall meetings with New York, and won the first one this season 4-2 on Nov. 20 at home for their third straight victory in the series.
Toronto captain Mats Sundin had a goal and an assist Saturday to extend his point streak to seven games. He has four goals and five assists in that span and leads the Leafs with 22 goals and 51 points.
Sundin did not play in the Nov. 20 game against the Islanders, but he has a 10-game home point streak against New York, recording six goals and seven assists in those contests.
Andrew Raycroft made 22 saves against the Penguins, but he's lost four of his last five home games, allowing six goals in two of his last three contests there.
Raycroft is 2-2-0 with a tie and a 2.56 goals-against average in five starts against New York. He earned the win in this season's first matchup with 19 saves.
Toronto has 61 points, one more than New York for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. The Isles, however, have earned points in nine of the last 10 games.
While Toronto has been struggling at home, New York has played poorly on the road of late. The Islanders dropped their third in a row away from Nassau Coliseum on Saturday, 4-3 in a shootout to Boston.
New York converted twice in the shootout, but it was former Islander Zdeno Chara who scored the winner in the ninth round.
"Good move by Chara," Islanders coach Ted Nolan said. "It came down to the ninth shooter and he made a good move and Ricky (DiPietro) let it in."
DiPietro, who had 25 saves, has lost two straight games and three of his last four.
DiPietro is 1-3 with a tie and a 4.25 GAA in five starts against Toronto. Only the victory came at home.
Isles center Alexei Yashin will likely sit out his seventh consecutive game Tuesday with a knee injury. Yashin has 17 goals and 13 assists in 31 games against the Leafs. Twenty of those points have come in Toronto.
Toronto trails 52-53-2 with seven ties in the series with New York. The Maple Leafs visit Nassau Coliseum on Feb. 22.
|Apr 05 '07||TOR 2 at NYI 5||J. Blake|
|Feb 22 '07||TOR 2 at NYI 3 - SO||R. Robitaille|
|Feb 13 '07||NYI 3 at TOR 2 - SO||V. Kozlov|
|Nov 20 '06||NYI 2 at TOR 4||D. Tucker|