Toronto Maple Leafs Kick Off Exhibition Games with Tilt against Buffalo Sabres

Derek HarmsworthSenior Writer ISeptember 22, 2008

The Toronto Maple Leafs hit the ice for the first time in this new season, and although it is just the first of many exhibition games, there will be a few intriguing storylines when the puck drops tonight.

It will be the first time the new-look Maple Leafs will hit the ice—a group largely assembled by GM Cliff Fletcher after his dismantling of the team last season and during the summer. 

Also it should be an absolutely fantastic atmosphere tonight at the Air Canada Centre, as every single ticket has been given away to real fans, who will likely keep the ACC rocking all night long.  It will truly be a treat to see what the arena would sound like if it weren't for the stuffy suits at ice level.

Here is the lineup for Toronto for the game:


29 Justin Pogge
31 Curtis Joseph


2 Luke Schenn
4 Jeff Finger
7 Ian White
8 Carlo Colaiacovo
26 Mike Van Ryn
40 Staffan Kronwall


11 Jiri Tlusty
14 Matt Stajan
19 Dominic Moore
22 Boyd Devereaux
25 Ben Ondrus
28 Mark Bell
39 John Mitchell
41 Nik Kulemin
44 Ryan Hollweg
47 Darryl Boyce
52 Robbie Earl
55 Jason Blake

It should be very cool to see reaction from the fans when Curtis Joseph steps on the ice.  Cujo will start the game tonight.  Justin Pogge will likely play periods two and three.

A quick update on former Maple Leafs forward Kyle Wellwood.  It appears things are not going well in Vancouver with the maligned centre. 

According to a local radio station here in London, Wellwood failed his physical with the Canucks and did "very poorly."  He is on the bubble—and if there is a young rookie who can outshine him at camp, don't be surprised to see Kyle Wellwood waived by the Canucks before the season starts.