Today with the bye-week coming to a close, the Leafs are back at work in Detroit having a practice late (because of the bye-week rules) prior to their game tomorrow. This is Jake Muzzin’s first chance to get on the ice with his new team.

See, he uses two sticks, that’s his secret.

In other good news, both Jake Gardiner and Andreas Johnsson are skating with the team. Johnsson had practised with the team once before the bye week as well.

If they are both able to play tomorrow, no roster moves will be needed, and the Leafs can sit at 23 players with three extra defencemen if they choose to. That seems like an unlikely long-term choice, but until Tyler Ennis is back on both feet, it might be how it stands.

These are the pairings from this practice:

Justin Holl is said to be skating as a forward in some drills.

With Morgan Rielly on the right side, if that is how they keep things, the challenge is to integrate that famous low-to-high pass the Leafs like to use offensively on the right side as well as the left. With Jake Gardiner and Rielly splitting the offensive minutes on the left, the forwards could keep to the same patterns, no matter who was on the ice, that saw them favour the left-side defenders for offensive pinches.

And the lines will be sure to please some and not others, and are of course, always subject to change.

If there’s anything interesting from the players or the coach after practice, we’ll update you.


The two Jakes on the second unit. I feel like I heard that idea somewhere...?

Muzzin speaks! And says about what you’d expect.

This left-right shuffle thing is going to get talked about a lot. I think I’ll just wait a week and see what happens.