Winners in six of the last seven games, the Islanders will look to make it their third straight tonight against the Leafs at Air Canada Centre.
Currently 11 points removed from the 8th spot in the Eastern Conference, the Islanders have the chance to cut that number to single digits. They can also leapfrog the streaking Devills, who are one point ahead of them with a game in hand.
Two Toronto natives are putting up big numbers lately. Mississauga's Matt Moulson has five goals in the past two games and Oakville's John Tavares has 14 points (5 goals, 9 assists) in the last nine games. You can also bet Tavares is getting antsy sitting behind goal-scoring leaders Moulson (26) and Michael Grabner (25); Tavares is third on the team with 23.
Toronto enters tonight's game coming off a 1-0 shootout loss to Ottawa Saturday. Leafs GM Brian Burke also proclaimed his desire to trade for a defenseman before today's game..,
One extra item worth noting: players were very upset with Dion Phaneuf's blindside hit on John Tavares in the teams' last meeting February 8. Even before that Phaneuf didn't have many fans in the Islanders' room. Remember that it was his hit in a preseason game last season that forced Kyle Okposo to leave the game on a stretcher.