4:57 PM — CapFriendly reports that the Maple Leafs did not have cap space to recall both Kenny Agostino and Timothy Liljegren earlier today. In fact, the team was $558,816 short of getting both under the cap, which forced them to place Mikheyev on long-term injured reserve, giving Toronto an extra $925K to work with.
9:27 AM — Toronto Maple Leafs forward Ilya Mikheyev suffered a scary injury on Thursday night against the New Jersey Devils when the skate of Jesper Bratt sliced his right wrist. Mikheyev skated off the ice under his own power, but left a trail of blood in his wake. He was immediately transported to a local Newark hospital for treatment, where he still remains. While Mikheyev was stable by the end of the night, there was no immediate word on the extent of his injury.
That word has come down this morning from agent Dan Milstein, echoed by Toronto, and it is a worst-case scenario for the Leafs. Milstein revealed that Mikheyev not only suffered damage to the artery in his wrist, but also the tendons. He underwent surgery to repair both and is expected to make a full recovery. However, Milstein states that he will not be re-evaluated for 90 days, at which time the Maple Leafs will be able to reveal a more accurate timeline. The earliest that the talented winger can return would potentially be late March, but it is more likely that he is done for at least the regular season, if not longer.
Mikheyev, 25, is in his first season in the NHL after leaving the KHL behind to sign a one-year, entry-level contract with Toronto. At a price point of just $925K, Mikheyev had already proven to be a bargain addition for the Leafs, recording 23 points in his first 39 games. The team will have to find a way to replace the production of a player on pace for nearly 50 points on the year.