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Toronto Marlies 2020-21 Season Preview

Toronto Marlies 2020-21 Season Preview

TORONTO – The Toronto Marlies have finally gotten the green light from the American Hockey League and government officials to begin play for the 2020-21 season. With this approval, the Marlies got their first games scheduled through the second half of February. With eight games in 12 days, there’s no doubt that many of the players will be sleeping at the rink, under the bleachers.

Initial Schedule (Home games in BOLD, all times local):

Monday, February 15, 2021 @ Manitoba Moose – 7:00 pm ET
Tuesday, February 16, 2021 @ Manitoba Moose – 8:00 pm ET
Thursday, February 18, 2021 @ Manitoba Moose – 7:00 pm ET
Friday, February 19, 2021 @ Manitoba Moose – 5:00 pm ET
Sunday, February 21, 2021 @ Stockton Heat (Calgary, AB) – 4:00 pm ET
Tuesday, February 23, 2021 @ Stockton Heat (Calgary, AB) – 8:00 pm ET
Wednesday, February 24, 2021 @ Stockton Heat (Calgary, AB) – 8:00 pm ET
Friday, February 26, 2021 @ Stockton Heat (Calgary, AB) – 4:00 pm ET

Head Coach: Greg Moore – Second season with Marlies; 16-24-02 coaching record

Captain: Not Yet Disclosed

Last Season: Toronto finished the partial season with a 27-29-5 record, seventh in the Pacific Division, 13th in the Eastern Conference

2019-20 Season Summary

After continuous deep bouts in the playoffs, the Marlies found themselves on the wrong side of the fence in the late parts of the 2019-20 season. After a coaching change in November and then December, the Marlies found themselves in a sharp decline after Christmas, even dropping as low as 2-6-2. Toronto’s penalty-killing dropped to the league basement, sitting at 30th. Toronto’s efforts shifted to the third period, where they had the second-most goals in the third, only behind Belleville.

Hot or Not?

The Marlies come into the shortened season with many returning faces. Newfoundland Growlers graduates will join the Marlies, with good depth intact for the 2020-21 season. Defensively, the Marlies will keep some of the core players on the line, with new additions filling the gaps. In the blue paint, they’ll be experimenting with new prospects out of junior leagues who haven’t had any AHL experience. Meanwhile, the forwards showcase many Newfoundland Growlers, who won the 2019 ECHL Kelly Cup.

Who’s Back?

  • Kenny Agostino (F): Posted 49 points (27G, 22A) in 53 games in 2019-20
  • Timothy Liljegren (D): One of Toronto’s top D-man prospects in the AHL. Split time between NHL and AHL last season.
  • Teemu Kivihalme (D): Made his AHL debut with Toronto last season after spending time in Finland. In 55 games, he scored 18 points (4G, 14A).

Who’s Through?

  • Kasimir Kaskisuo (G): Signed by the Nashville Predators, he’s currently sitting on the teams’ taxi squad.
  • Jeremy Bracco (D): Currently with KalPa in the Finnish Liiga, Bracco signed with the Carolina Hurricanes in the off-season after leading the team in assists.

Who’s New?

  • David Warsofsky (D): Warsofsky joins the club after fighting last season with the Wilkes-Barrie Scranton Penguins. He was included in a six-man trade between Toronto and Pittsburgh.
  • Scott Sabourin (F): The Ottawa native joins the Marlies after stationing last season with the Senators.
  • Pavel Gogolev (F): Last season, Gogolev played for the Guelph Storm in the OHL, scoring 96 points (46G,51A) in 63 games

What to Watch For?

  1. Goaltending. This season the Marlies are experimenting with goalies straight out of junior. Both Ian Scott and Tristan Lennox have yet to hit the ice in the AHL. Meanwhile, Andrew D’Agostini has been bumping around the ECHL for quite some time.
  2. How will Greg Moore fair behind the Marlies bench? Last season, Moore’s record sent the team into a downward spiral. Now with more experience under his belt, will he be able to lead his team to a playoff spot?

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    Zack Power covers the Toronto Marlies for The Sin Bin. Follow and interact with him on Twitter @SinBinMarlies.

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