This morning the Toronto Maple Leafs announced that they were recalling winger Kasperi Kapanen from the Toronto Marlies, and sending centre Eric Fehr down to the minor league team.
This is creating some speculation about James van Riemsdyk’s ability to play in tonight’s game. There was some thoughts he wouldn’t play against Carolina, and after the game it was a common thought that he shouldn’t have played for sure.
With Kapanen coming up, the Leafs have recalled a well known entity, as he put up 43 points in 43 AHL games last year, and was a member of the playoff roster for the Leafs against the Washington Capitals, scoring two goals in the six-game series. He has three goals for the Marlies so far this season, and is looking to nab his second NHL regular season point.
Eric Fehr is being sent down as Dominic Moore has cemented himself into the fourth line centre position, and Fehr has played four games this season without making much of an impact. This could be a temporary move, to make room for Kapanen, or it could be giving Fehr more playing time on the young Marlies, to keep him in game shape. Fehr was waived earlier this week with no one claiming him.
The one big question that comes from this transaction is this: Do the Maple Leafs see Josh Leivo as a viable option to fill in for injured players?
If JVR is out, the Leafs have a perfectly good winger sitting in the press box right now in Leivo. If he’s healthy and able to play will he still be sitting tonight while Kapanen gets ice time?
One idea from this is that the Leafs don’t see Leivo as a top six winger, and since they have one out of the line up they wanted someone in that mold to play rather than inserting someone like Leivo. That’s just my theory if Kappy plays and Leivo sits, though.
We won’t have any clues with who’s playing and who isn’t until the morning skate, so check back in with the preview later this moring formore information.