Glossing over the Leaf headlines the past few days, it’s obvious the team has been struck with a pretty significant spate of injuries of late. This fact will generally not help as they attempt to stanch the their November swoon, having lost five of their last six games.
The latest victims to go down are Matt Lombardi and Mike Komisarek. They join Mikhail Grabovski and Clarke MacArthur who took their lumps last weekend. These mishaps have been pinpointed by Leafs medical staff as either upper or lower body — perhaps both? — type injuries. Recovery times vary with the longest anticipated absence being Komisarek who broke his arm blocking a shot earlier in the week. And of course, let’s not forget the severest ailment as goaltender James Reimer now enters his second month of recovery, nursing concussion-like symptoms.
The Leafs are definitely in tough for the next fortnight. Following tonight’s home game against the also-slumping Washington Capitals, they embark on an extensive road trip that will take them across the US. How they fare with a depleted roster will go a long way in determining if their playoff quest will be in tatters or not.
It’s definitely a good sign to see Reimer practicing with the team again. He can’t come back soon enough. We’re not saying anything that hasn’t been stated a hundred times already but but without their number one netminder, Leafs’ chances of being in a March playoff fight are slim to none.
Ben Scrivens has filled in adequately at times but frequent rookie flubs demonstrate he’s still too green for a major
dose of prime time. Jonas Gustuvsson meantime is now basically an afterthought for coach Ron Wilson and should probably have a suitcase packed when Reimer makes his eventual return. By the way, there’s no truth to the rumour Wilson contacted Reimer’s mom for her opinion on when he should play again. So there.
Leaf fans are crossing their fingers he ramps up quickly to the mojo he showed for the last half of last year’s season. His team will need every bit of it.