The reason why the Maple Leafs are playing at 2 pm today

Dec 23 2019, 2:00 am

The puck will drop on today’s Toronto Maple Leafs game earlier than usual.

Hosting the Carolina Hurricanes at Scotiabank Arena, the game will start at 2 pm ET — despite the fact that it’s Monday.

The game is the first of four “Next Gen Games” scheduled this season, though it is the only weekday matinee:

  • Monday, December 23, 2 pm vs Carolina Hurricanes
  • Saturday, February 1, 7 pm vs Ottawa Senators
  • Saturday, February 29, 7 pm vs Vancouver Canucks
  • Saturday, March 21, 7 pm vs Columbus Blue Jackets

The Leafs are using these games as an opportunity to fill the arena with young fans, just as they did for last season’s “Next Generation Game,” which was also played at 2 pm on a weekday.

“The Next Gen Games are a unique opportunity for the Toronto Maple Leafs to celebrate the youth in our community and connect with the next generation of fans,” said Leafs president Brendan Shanahan. “We’re proud to host the Next Gen Games as they give us an exciting glimpse into the future of our sport, both on and off the ice, and to further unite hockey fans across multiple generations.”