The Toronto Maple Leafs will have a new look lineup tonight, as several roster moves were made this morning to deal with notable injuries. Rasmus Sandin and Mitch Marner were both placed on injured reserve, while Joey Anderson was sent back to the minor leagues. Alex Biega, Kristians Rubins and Alex Steeves have been recalled. At today’s morning skate, Travis Dermott was also absent, while Petr Mrazek was back with the NHL group after his short AHL conditioning stint.
Sandin faces a few weeks on the shelf thanks to a Neal Pionk hit that earned a two-game suspension yesterday. Chris Johnston explained on TSN radio yesterday that the young Maple Leafs defenseman is expected to miss two to three weeks, but it looks more like three to four now according to Luke Fox of Sportsnet. That’s probably a good outcome given how serious the injury appeared, but it will still throw off the strong season Sandin was having as a full-time player.
Marner meanwhile could be out a week or two, according to Darren Dreger of TSN. The star forward collided with a teammate in practice a few days ago and has missed the last two games, both losses for the Maple Leafs. The team seemed a bit out of sorts without their top playmaker, who also logs big minutes on the powerplay and penalty kill. Marner had 21 points in 24 games before the injury. Both he and Sandin will need to miss at least seven days from when they last played.
Remember, the Maple Leafs are also going to be down Jason Spezza after his in-person hearing with the Department of Player Safety is concluded this afternoon. Spezza retaliated for the Pionk hit by targeting the Winnipeg Jets defenseman with an ugly check of his own, and faces the possibility of a much longer suspension.
It appears as though both Rubins and Steeves will be making their NHL debuts this evening,