Game day:

Avalanche at Leafs

Toronto Star - - SPORTS -

SCO­TIA­BANK ARENA

FACE­OFF: 7 p.m. TV: TSN4 RA­DIO: Sport­snet 590 The FAN

KEY PLAY­ERS

MacKin­non/Tavares Colorado’s Nathan MacKin­non, one of the four cap­tains for the up­com­ing all-star game, en­tered Sun­day fifth in the league in points (66) and tied for sev­enth in goals (26), three be­hind John Tavares, who is tied for third in goals. Coach Mike Bab­cock prefers go­ing to head-to­head with top lines, which could lead to a MacKin­non-Tavares matchup, but he might opt for the Nazem Kadri check­ing unit against the lethal troika of MacKin­non, Mikko Ran­ta­nen and Gabriel Lan­deskog.

NEED TO KNOW

The Avs are not en­joy­ing their five-game road trek across Canada, drop­ping three in a row and just barely hang­ing on to a wild-card slot whilst fourth in the Cen­tral Divi­sion. Colorado’s stel­lar start to the sea­son has been se­verely un­der­mined by seven con­sec­u­tive road losses ... The low­light of the team’s ex­cur­sion north of the bor­der was MacKin­non caught on cam­era, in Cal­gary, erupt­ing in a dis­pute with coach Jared Bed­nar. MacKin­non seemed to mouth “Do your job” at Bed­nar to­ward the end of the 5-3 de­feat, the team’s eighth loss in nine games. MacKin­non later ac­knowl­edged he was upset the goalie hadn’t been pulled ear­lier but ad­mit­ted he’d mis­han­dled the sit­u­a­tion, say­ing he had looked “like an id­iot.”

UP NEXT

Thurs­day in Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m. Rosie DiManno

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