The Toronto Maple Leafs will be without forward for Nick Foligno for their game on Thursday against the Montreal Canadiens and “probably” won’t play on Saturday, either.
“He’s day-to-day here, so we’re just going to take it one day at a time.”
Foligno left in the second period of the Maple Leafs’ 3-2 overtime loss to the Canadiens on Monday.
He made a hard stop at the Canadiens’ goal and then bent over with a grimace of pain. He skated to the Leafs dressing room and didn’t return.
The Leafs acquired Foligno from the Columbus Blue Jackets on Apr. 11. In a three-way deal that saw two other teams absorb 75 percent of his $5.5 million cap hit. Toronto surrendered a first-round pick to the Jackets and acquired forward Stefan Noesen from the San Jose Sharks.
The good news in Foligno’s case is it doesn’t appear as though his in injury is anything the team is too concerned about in the short term.
Foligno has four assists in five games with the Leafs this season.
Joe Thornton finished much of Monday’s game in Foligno’s place and skated on the first line with Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner at practice on Wednesday.
Noesen, who has yet to suit up for a game with Toronto, skated on the third line with Ilya Mikheyev and Alex Kerfoot.
Keefe indicated that the lines at practice may not hold and they are based on some other players who may be banged up.
“I wanted to get Noesen a look on a line here today in the event that he does to play,” Keefe said. “So we’ll have more information on that tomorrow.”
Adam Brooks was the lone player wearing the extras gray jersey at practice. The Winnipeg native has produced consistently since he’s come into the lineup to center the fourth line.
Brooks has four goals and one assist in nine games this season
Andersen heading to conditioning stint
The Maple Leafs have confirmed that they are sending Frederik Andersen on a conditioning stint with the Toronto Marlies.
Andersen took part in a full practice on Wednesday. Provided he got through that ok (all signs are that he did), he would begin that stint with the Marlies tomorrow where he is scheduled to play in half a game.
“Just a good way for himself to get back into it,” Keefe said. “And then things will be reassessed after that.”
The stars never aligned properly where Toronto was in a spot to activate the goaltender to the active roster before the end of the regular season. The Leafs only have just under $1.9 million in cap space according to Puckpedia.com. We outlined all the scenarios a while back where Andersen could get into games and cited Scenario 6 as a likely outcome. That’s ultimately what the Leafs decided to do with the goaltender for now.
Under this scenario, Andersen is permitted to take part in three games with the Marlies and be with the club for six days to determine if the player is eligible to come off long term injured reserve.
There are only nine days remaining on the Leafs schedule before the playoffs begin. Once the regular season calendar concludes, the Leafs can activate Andersen to the main roster without restriction.
Andersen hasn’t played in a game since Mar. 19.
Hyman and Nash take part in practice
Toronto Maple Leafs forwards Zach Hyman and Riley Nash took part in their first full practice with the team, albeit they wore red non-contact sweaters.
Neither are expected to see any game action, according to Keefe.
Nash suffered a knee sprain with the Columbus Blue Jackets in early April. The Leafs acquired the forward days later from the Jackets in exchange for a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.
Nash has two goals and five assists in 37 games and a lot of playoff experience, specifically against the Toronto Maple Leafs with both the Jackets and the Boston Bruins. When healthy, Nash may find himself on the middle of the team’s fourth line.
Hyman suffered an MCL sprain on Apr. 18 when Vancouver Canucks defenseman Alex Edler stuck out his knee that resulted in a knee-on-knee collision.
The timeline for Hyman’s injury was a minimum of two weeks.
Hyman has 15 goals and 18 assists in 43 games this season and is a pending unrestricted free agent.
Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Justin Holl returned to practice sporting a full face shield after he took a puck to the face off a clearing attempt by Vancouver’s Nils Hoglander last week.
“I’m actually feeling really good, it was more of a preventative death other day sitting out the other day,” Holl said of his one-game absence. “It was probably the smart thing to do and just let it heal a little bit.”
In Holl’s absence, the team was without a one of their main penalty killers and defenders in 5-on-6 situations. Montreal scored their first goal the power play and got their second with the extra attacker on the ice.
Holl skated with Jake Muzzin, his regular defense partner, at practice on Wednesday.
The Leafs spent some time working on that situation at practice on Wednesday. Alex Kerfoot slid into the spot normally occupied by Foligno with Matthews and Marner. Ilya Mikheyev skated with John Tavares and William Nylander on the second unit.
Sandin back on PP1
Rasmus Sandin skated on the top power play unit during Monday’s game and that continued into practice on Wednesday.
The young defenseman has carved out his role with the club, after struggling to get into the lineup earlier in the season while also overcoming a foot injury.
Sandin’s promotion to the main roster came before Zach Bogosian suffered a shoulder injury. The move to main power play reps further solidifies his spot in the lineup right now.