It was considered a likely scenario that the Toronto Maple Leafs intended to send defensive prospect Rasmus Sandin to join Sweden for the World Junior Championship later this month. However, after Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Tyson Barrie went down with an injury Saturday, that could change the thinking of the team.
Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston on Hockey Night in Canada late Saturday, suggested that the team’s 2018 first-rounder could get called up to the NHL club depending on the severity of Barrie’s ankle injury that he suffered in Saturday’s victory over Edmonton. Barrie blocked a shot in the first period and immediately went to the dressing room. There has been no word on the status of Barrie, other than Sportnet’s Luke Fox reporting that x-rays were negative on Barrie’s ankle. However, even an injury that might keep the blueliner out for a week could be enough for Toronto to hesitate sending the 19-year-old to Czechoslovakia.
Sandin has been impressive in his second season in the AHL, where he has posted two goals and 12 points in 18 games and would be the likeliest candidate to step in for the Maple Leafs, although the team also has 2017 first-rounder Timothy Liljegren playing well with the Marlies as well.
Not getting Sandin would be another hit for Sweden, who were just informed earlier today that they would not be getting Adam Boqvist, who the Chicago Blackhawks opted to retain in the NHL instead. Sandin played for Sweden at the WJC last season, posting two goals and four points in five games.