Coach Ron Wilson revealed after the game today that forward Colby Armstrong has a concussion and will be out of the lineup indefinitely. This means the team will likely have to recall a forward to fill his spot, unless they decide to skate Jay Rosehill and/or Colton Orr.
Wilson revealed that Armstrong suffered the concussion in a collision with Canucks forward Ryan Kesler over the weekend. He failed to notify anyone that the he could have been concussed until he became nauseous and began vomiting earlier in the day.
Interesting note coming from Dirty Dangle Hockey on Twitter : “This is Colby Armstrong’s 5th different injury since joining the Toronto Maple Leafs and he’s now missed 56 out of 115 games or 49% of games”.
You can’t ignore the fact that Colby Armstrong has not been much of a factor for the Maple Leafs considering his injuries. Many were concerned at the money given to him when he was signed, even then assuming he would actually play. Now that he has missed basically half of the games since he joined the club, it may be a different story all together.
This brings us to the question of which player gets recalled from the Marlies. Most likely, the Leafs will recall a player to play bottom six minutes with the team. Someone like Joey Crabb or Philippe Dupuis could move up to the third line, paving the way for a defensive player like Darryl Boyce or Mike Zigomanis to come up. Or, they could go with the safe/predictable move and recall the much-travelled Nazem Kadri. Or, nothing at all. We’ll know by this time tomorrow.
There were plenty of drama surrounding the Leafs AHL affiliate this past week.
Working on six night’s rest, the Marlies were raring to go Saturday afternoon against the Rochester Americans. Although faltering early in the game, Joe Colborne continued his hot start to the season, scoring 2:28 into overtime to give Toronto a flying 5-4 come-from-behind victory. Colborne’s overtime marker came after Ryan Hamilton and Darryl Boyce scored 34 seconds apart late in the third period to tie the game 4-4. Joey Crabb and Kelsey Wilson had the other goals for Toronto, and goaltender Ben Scrivens stopped 22 shots for the win.
The Marlies were right back at it on Sunday afternoon, although the scoreline wasn’t in Toronto’s favour, falling to the Lake Erie Monsters 5-4 in overtime. It was the second straight night that the Marlies fought back from a two-goal third-period deficit to claw their way into the extra frame. Joey Crabb had two goals to lead the Marlies, while Joe Colborne and Mike Zigomanis also scored. Jussi Rynnas stopped 27 shots, taking the loss.
There are some major positives to draw from the Marlies so far this season:
- Marlies scoring leaders Joey Crabb (6G, 6A) and Joe Colborne (5G, 7A) are second and third, respectively, in the AHL scoring race. They sit one point behind Chris Bourque of the Hershey Bears. Crabb and Colborne are also tied for fourth in league in plus/minus, each with a +6 rating.
- One other Marlie has made it to the Top 20 in AHL scoring: Mike Zigomanis (2G, 7A), sitting 16th.
- Marlies defencemen Matt Lashoff and Marcel Mueller have both started the season strong for their club, each with a goal and four assists to lead all Marlies blueliners.
There are some question marks surrounding the play of few of the Marlies:
- Keith Aulie, who seemed to have a bright future with the Maple Leafs after partnering with Dion Phaneuf for the majority of the second-half of last year’s season, has started this campaign flat. He’s recorded zero points, is a team-worst -5, and only has three shots on goal in six games. He is far from the form Leafs fans grew accustomed with last year.
- Luca Caputi, who at one point was a Leafs top-six forward following the trade which sent Alexei Ponikarovsky to the Pittsburgh Penguins, has only recorded one point with the Marlies this season (1G, 0A).
- In four games played, Ben Scrivens has seen his save percentage slip to .889, well below the .924 he displayed in last year’s campaign.
The Marlies now sit atop their division with a 4-1-1 record, taking points in five of six games played. They pick things up this Wednesday at home against the Abbotsford Heat.
Yes, the season is a long one, but through six games, it looks like the future is bright on The Farm.
I welcome your thoughts.
The Leafs officially kick off the 2011-2012 NHL preseason with a classic clash against the Ottawa Senators. Tonight’s battle features a healthy portion of skill and grit for both teams, as players are vying to earn NHL spots for the coming season. This tilt should be a great game as two rivals square off and begin their prospective campaigns. After the jump we’ll take a look at the lineups, and some other interesting notes for camp.
The Leafs will ice the following lineup tonight:
Clarke MacArthur – Mikhail Grabovski – Nikolai Kulemin
Nazem Kadri – Tyler Bozak – Colby Armstrong
Joey Crabb – Joe Colborne – Matt Frattin
Kenny Ryan – Philippe Dupuis – Jay Rosehill
Keith Aulie – Dion Phaneuf
Jake Gardiner – John-Michael Liles
Carl Gunnarsson – Matt Lashoff
Some notes about the lineup:
- The Leafs look to have two “projected” lines in action tonight. By projected, I’m referring to lines that have been predicted to be together to start the regular season. These two lines are Clarke MacArthur - Mikhail Grabovski – Nikolai Kulemin and Nazem Kadri – Tyler Bozak – Colby Armstrong.
- The Leafs also appear to be icing the Marlies likely top line for this season, consisting of Joey Crabb – Joe Colborne – Matt Frattin.
- Kenny Ryan‘s appearance on the fourth line tonight likely means he’s considered for AHL duty this season, as he is eligible. It also speaks of how highly the organization regards him. He’s an excellent checker and should do well tonight.
- Philippe Dupuis gets his first chance to impress as he’s anchoring the fourth line tonight.
- Leafs (likely) top pairing of Dion Phaneuf and Keith Aulie get the call tonight, will probably see tons of minutes.
- Jake Gardiner and John-Michael Liles? Interesting combination of speed, skill and offense here.
- Jonas Gustavsson and Ben Scrivens will split time tonight, with Gustavsson getting the initial nod.
Alex Auld, Robin Lehner, Craig Anderson.
Jared Cowen, David Rundblad, Filip Kuba, Tim Conboy, Patrick Wiercioch, Eric Gryba, Erik Karlsson, Mark Borowiecki.
Milan Michalek (LW), Peter Regin (LW), Colin Greening (LW), Zack Smith (C), Bobby Butler (RW), Nikita Filatov (LW), Stephane Da Costa (C), Chris Neil (RW), Mark Parrish (RW), Zenon Konopka (C), Francis Lessard (RW), Mark Stone (RW), Mike Hoffman (LW), Nick Foligno (LW), Mika Zibanejad (C).
This one should be a dandy folks, make sure you tune in to LeafsTV for this one tonight (or by radio!).
The Leafs are changing up their alternate jersey for the upcoming season. If you haven’t already heard, they’ll be using this gem as an alternate. This comes via icethetics.
What are your thoughts on the Luke Schenn extension? You should vote in the latest poll.
May 4th, 2004. That date can mean many different things to people; but for any die hard Toronto Maple Leafs fan like me, you’ll recognize that date as the last time the Leafs saw playoff action. It was game 6 in the conference semi-finals against the Flyers where they lost 3-2 off Jeremy Roenick’s GWG to put away the series. Since then I’m sure many suffering fans have developed distaste for the Flyers, I know I have. But that’s all in the past; it’s time to look ahead to the future which looks very promising.
This year’s free agency class hasn’t created much of a “frenzy” for the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s safe to say that the Brad Richards situation put a damper on the Leafs’ hopes of acquiring a top line centre. Despite all this, the Maple Leafs and fans have a lot to look forward to this coming season. Arguably the biggest name the Leafs have signed this off-season is Tim Connolly. The 30-year-old had 13 goals and 29 assists in 68 games last season with the Buffalo Sabres. Connolly will add some jump to the top 6 forwards, and he has the potential to be a 70-point or more player, provided that he stays healthy. He will be contending with Tyler Bozak and Mikhail Grabovski to centre the top line of Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul. Mathew Lombardi is also in the mix for the top centre position, if and only if he is healthy enough for action. Nazem Kadri will most likely be moved into a winger position, which will suit his style of play a lot better. Kadri has the skill, but the size factor is his biggest issue. If he wants to have an impact on this time, he’s going to have to train hard so he can provide more “truculence” along with his finesse.
Brian Burke also locked up three of their solid grinders Mike Zigomanis, Darryl Boyce, and Joey Crabb to one-year contracts. Along with the acquisition of Philippe Dupuis, the Maple Leafs will have all the force necessary from their forwards. And who can forget Colton Orr? Expect to see a lot of offense this season. The forwards are developing quite nicely within the organization. Joe Colborne and Tyler Biggs are just two names for fans to get excited about.
With the average height of 6’3, the Maple Leafs’ defense will hopefully live up to the expectations they’ve had on their shoulders for the past two seasons. Look for Luke Schenn to continue his strong and dominate play on the Leafs’ blue line from last season. With any luck, John-Michael Liles will do what he was brought here to do, which is fill in the hole of puck-moving defenceman Tomas Kaberle. Brett Lebda was the closest thing the Leafs had to Kaberle during the second half of the season; that isn’t a good thing. Miraculously Burke was able to pull a rabbit out of the hat and actually acquire something decent for him in Cody Franson and Matthew Lombardi. Many fans including myself have been less than impressed with the performance of Mike Komisarek, former all-star defenceman for the Montréal Canadiens. If his dreadful play continues, it is likely that Burke will pool him in a trade for another asset that he may have his eye on. And let’s not forget about Optimus Reim, the Maple Leafs’ number one goalie James Reimer. The 23-year-old from Morweena, MB, had a 20-10-5 record, with .921 SV% and a 2.60 GAA; not bad for a kid buried within the system. He is an outstanding athlete and human being, who this year will give the Leafs some much needed support in goal.
May 4th, 2004. Given some of the additions Brian Burke has made combined with the development of the young players in the system, that date will likely be changed to mid/ late April of 2012 when the playoffs begin. The Maple Leafs are a solid young team and should definitely make the post-season this year.
- Michael Cappabianca