Hearing now the plan is for #Leafs to recall Garret Sparks and have him back-up Curtis McElhinney tomorrow in Buffalo— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) March 15, 2018
This is now official:
The status of Frederik Andersen is not known early this morning, but when we have real news, we’ll pass it along. In his post-game remarks, Mike Babcock said he thought it wasn’t anything major, basing that on the fact that Andersen stayed in the game after what he thought was the incident that caused the injury — Alexander Radulov falling on Andersen in the crease.
Meanwhile Garret Sparks was busier than McElhinney last night, since he played a full game. He wrapped his work up earlier, getting a shutout against Laval at home in Ricoh.
The timing fits for the Leafs to manoeuvre Sparks around from rink to rink and never have to call anyone up if the injury to Andersen is very minor.
The Leafs play tonight in Buffalo, and the Marlies play on Friday in Belleville. The Leafs come back home to play Montréal on Saturday, while the Marlies drive right back down the 401 home to play Utica on Sunday. Sparks could just wear two different jerseys at all times and make sure the right one is on top. Oh, and he’d need two different ball caps too.
If the Marlies would like a second practice goalie, the field must be wide open for ATOs right now with college hockey ending for many teams. This organization usually has a plan B, C and D, so I won’t be surprised if they have someone on hand quickly with the Marlies. A goalie prospect in the age range older than Joseph Woll and younger than Sparks is a hole that should be filled permanently.
The Marlies also have Cal Heeter in Orlando they can call up, but the Solar Bears play a three-in-three starting tonight, so that would be very disruptive.
Update: The Marlies have added Evan Buitenhuis, per the AHL transaction page, presumably on an ATO (now officially). Buitenhuis is from Burlington and is coming off his fourth NCAA Div III season with Hamilton College where he had a save percentage of .954. He is 24, and played most of his junior hockey in the GTA.