The Hawks (45-20-5) head into the game in first place in the Central Division and Western Conference at 95 points. Toronto (32-23-14) is in fourth in the Atlantic Division, and holds the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference by one point.
Chicago carries a five-game winning streak against Toronto, dating back to 2014. In the first meeting this season, Artemi Panarin scored the game-winner in a 5-4 shootout victory over the Leafs in October.
The Hawks are 10-1 in their last 11 road games this season, averaging more than four goals a game during that stretch. Patrick Kane has been an offensive machine for Chicago during that time, scoring 17 points in his last 10 games. Kane’s 77 points this season rank third overall in the NHL.
Toronto is coming off a 5-0 shutout victory over Tampa Bay. Goaltender Fredrick Andersen was back to his usual form by stopping all 33 shots he faced.
The Leafs are a high scoring team, averaging the sixth highest goals per game percentage with just over three goals a game. Auston Matthews, the top overall pick in last year’s draft, and Mitch Marner are tied for the team lead in points with 55. The duo sits five points back of Winnipeg’s Patrik Laine for the league lead among first-year players. Matthews, however, is scoreless in his last seven games. The Leafs are 4-2-1 during his slump.
For more on the Toronto Maple Leafs, visit SB Nation’s Pension Plan Puppets.
*Lines will be updated if necessary
How to watch Blackhawks at Maple Leafs
Time: 6 p.m. CST
Where: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON
TV: CSN Chicago