The Maple Leafs have announced that John Tavares will miss at least 2 weeks with a broken finger.
The @MapleLeafs announced today that centre John Tavares sustained a broken finger late in last night’s game in Washington.— Leafs PR (@LeafsPR) October 17, 2019
He will be out of the lineup for a minimum of two weeks, at which point he will be reassessed by the team's medical staff.
Two weeks takes us to the end of the month and another game against the Capitals on the 29th.
Last night, after the goal pictured above, Tavares stayed on the ice until the final few seconds of the game when Auston Matthews and Andreas Johnsson came on for Tavares and Alexander Kerfoot.
The Leafs had been dominating possession with the goalie pulled, and that was the only change late in that sequence as the clock ended the game with the Leafs coming up short by one goal.
It’s not known at this time if that’s when the injury happened.
Correction: it was before the goal.
Travis Dermott and Zach Hyman cannot be recalled until at least after the 10th game played by the Leafs, and possibly not until after 24 days have passed from the start of the regular season — I’m not sure about that part.
This means that Tavares’s injury time could end after they return to the lineup. It looks like both are near, and Dermott is likely ready now.
Tavares could be put on LTIR, which basically would mean the Leafs can do whatever they like until he’s better, subject only to the 23-man roster limit. If they believe he’ll be out for 10 games and 24 days, they likely will do that. If they think he won’t, then LTIR is not an option.
If they simply place Tavares on IR, his full cap hit counts, and the only thing the Leafs gain is a roster space to call someone up. Of course, they don’t have enough unused LTIR pool right now to add a player, so they gain nothing from IR.
The Leafs are currently carrying two extra forwards, so there’s no actual need to call anyone up. Assuming Dermott will return as soon as possible, the Leafs will need to demote someone at that point to make “cap space” in the LTIR pool for him.