Maple Leafs Making Lineup Changes Ahead of Pivotal Game 4

Toronto Maple Leafs

Getty The Toronto Maple Leafs trail Boston 2-1 in their series

The Toronto Maple Leafs are projected to make changes to their lineup in a pivotal Game 4 against the Boston Bruins.

The Maple Leafs dropped Game 3 at home on April 24 to trail in the series 2-1. Ahead of Game 4 in Toronto on April 27, the Maple Leafs are projected to make some changes to their lineup, noticeably on defense.

Defenseman T.J. Brodie, who has been a healthy scratch for the first three games, is set to draw into the lineup, in replace of Timothy Liljegren.

“I had talked to (Brodie) even while the regular season was going on that it’s important for him to stay ready and that it was looking like he was going to be on the outside. But, he’s got lots of experience and we wanted to have a look going into the playoffs and one that we’ve liked. But, it’s important for him to stay ready, not just him but (Connor) Timmins, (Mark) Giordano just the same,” Keefe said after practice on April 27.

“Things can change really quickly come playoff time. But in Brodie’s case, he played so much in the regular season, he’s got so much experience in the league, and in the playoffs, it’s important that he keeps his mindset right but it’s tough for a guy like him for sure that’s used to playing every day,” Keefe added.

Brodie last played on April 17 in the final regular season game.

William Nylander Expected to Play

The other lineup change for Toronto is that forward William Nylander is projected to return to the lineup in Game 4 on April 27, Keefe told the media.

Nylander has missed the first three games of the series against the Bruins for undisclosed reasons.

“It’s personal so I’m not going to get into that,” Nylander told the media on April 26…. “The games are crazy to watch from home. I’ve never been so nervous in my life. I think the guys are doing a great job and tomorrow’s (April 27) a big game

With Nylander returning to the lineup, forward Connor Dewar will be a healthy scratch. Nick Robertson, meanwhile, will drop to the fourth line with Ryan Reaves and David Kampf.

Ilya Samsonov Remains the Starting Goalie

Toronto will not be changing their starting goalie for Game 4 against Boston as Ilya Samsonov will start on April 27.

Samsonov has been inconsistent in the series. In Game 1 he had a .833 save percentage, but followed that up with a .931 save percentage in Game 2, before dropping to a .909 save percentage in Game 3.

The Russian was the first goalie off the ice in morning skate on April 27, signaling he would be starting.

In Game 3, Samsonov allowed a weak goal to Bruins forward Trent Frederic to allow Boston to tie the game, and the goalie knew that it was a save he needed to make.

“I need to stop the puck, for sure. Probably this my mistake. I’ll do some prepare better. I watch some video with Curtis (Sanford) today and we talk about this a little bit. It’s in the past right now. I need to prepare for next moment,” Samsonov said, via Mark Masters.

Game 4 is set to take place at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto on April 27 at 8 p.m. Eastern time.

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