#Leafs will bring Teemu Kivihalme on their road trip, but not Timothy Liljegren. Won't be bringing an extra forward either - riding with 12 forwards and 7 defencemen.— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) December 30, 2019
So, the Liljegren recall was just for practice where he skated on the fourth D pair with Kivilhame.
Today on Recall Roulette, the Leafs have chosen Timothy Liljegren and Teemu Kivihalme to join the roster ahead of road trip that takes them to Minnesota on New Year’s Eve and Winnipeg on Thursday, January 2.
The @MapleLeafs have recalled defencemen Timothy Liljegren and Teemu Kivihalme from the @TorontoMarlies (AHL). pic.twitter.com/XhfmwJrWUq— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) December 30, 2019
If you’ve lost track and thought Liljegren was still on the team, you’re forgiven, since he was up until yesterday. The Leafs have been yo-yoing a lot of players up and down, and most of them have never played. Adam Brooks, who is still on the roster, has been the exception. (Brooks is from Winnipeg, and my money is on him staying with the Leafs through that Jets game next week.)
This recall fills the Leafs roster up to the maximum of 23 players (not including those on LTIR). However, more moves are possibly coming, since Jake Muzzin is not even on IR (IR takes the player off the 23-man roster limit, but their cap hit still counts). As of now, we don’t know if the Leafs intend to put Muzzin on LTIR, which requires him to miss 24 days and 10 games.
In addition, Andreas Johnsson is eligible to come off LTIR tomorrow, if he’s healthy.
There’s plenty of LTIR room right now to add these extra defenders, giving the Leafs eight healthy players on defence and 12 forwards, but it seems likely room will be made to add an extra forward one way or another. There is no guarantee either of these young defenders plays in a game, of course.
The constant disruption to the Marlies roster presents a challenge for them, but they have recalled Mac Hollowell and Joey Duszak from Newfoundland, and this is their opportunity to impress. The Marlies are without their top pair in Rasmus Sandin and Liljegren, and their backup top pair in Martin Marincin and Kivihalme. The Marlies play the Cleveland Monsters at 3 p.m. on Tuesday at home, and then play the always-tough Syracuse Crunch on Friday, January 3 on the road.
Until then the rest of the Marlies can play this on repeat and hope they get a trip to the Leafs press box too.