Maple Leafs’ Frederik Andersen making first back-to-back start since 2017

Maple Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen doesn't care about himself, he just hopes the whole team can respond well to their tough finish against the Flyers, and show what kind of character they have, and pride they have for the Maple Leafs logo.

Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen will get the start in both games of a back-to-back for the first time since January of 2017.

Andersen will be back in the net Wednesday against the Colorado Avalanche after giving up five goals in a loss to the Philadelphia Flyers Tuesday.

Head coach Shedlon Keefe admitted to reporters that starting a goalie in both games of a back-to-back is not ideal but “sometimes circumstances will come up where the fight of the player will dictate what you’re going to do and you go against what your gut instinct tells you that you should do and that’s what we’re doing here.”

In 10 pervious instances where Andersen has started both games of a back-to-back, he’s posted a 6-4-0 record 3.36 goals-against average and .893 save percentage in the second game. He’s also been pulled twice.

Under former coach Mike Babcock, Andersen almost always started the first game of back-to-backs regardless of opponents. But since Keefe took over on Nov. 20, he’s started Andersen in just the second game of a back-to-back — giving Michael Hutchinson the start in the first of a home and home series with the Buffalo Sabres — and now given the team’s No. 1 starter both games this week.

The Flyers game finished 6-1 but ended with Philadelphia scoring five goals (one of them into an empty net) in the final 10 minutes of the game. After that loss, Auston Matthews said the Maple Leafs “folded” in front of their goaltender while Andersen spoke about playing with more pride.

“I don’t really worry about me,” Andersen said Tuesday. “I worry more about the way we played for the logo on the jersey. I think we’ve got to (have) more pride than that. Hopefully we can respond and show what kind of character we have going forward.”

Andersen stopped 34 of 37 shots in a 5-3 win over the Avalanche on Nov. 23.

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