In Sunday night’s loss to the Arizona Coyotes, Andreas Johnsson left the game with what was immediately announced as a concussion.
After the game, Mike Babcock said the Leafs would be calling up Trevor Moore for their last game before the All-Star break and their bye week.
The Leafs play the Washington Capitals at home on Wednesday, and then are off until February 1. There is no word yet on the status of Jake Gardiner, who missed Monday’s game, his first missed game in over two and a half years, with what was described as back spasms. In his post-game comments, Babcock said Gardiner had suffered discomfort on the plane coming home from Florida, and that the problem dates back for some time.
Mike Babcock on Jake Gardiner: "I don't know if it's been a week or 10 days or whatever, he's had his back spasms & he's been able to play through it ... he tried this morning & it didn't get there"— Mark Masters (@markhmasters) January 21, 2019
Martin Marincin played in Sunday’s game, but most of Gardiner’s minutes went to Travis Dermott. Since the Leafs rarely have any power plays, the decision on how to split up the defender time with the man advantage was mostly deferred, but Morgan Rielly did play about 66 per cent of the one five-on-four in the game. That’s more than the usual split, but not by a lot.
Calling up just Moore will leave the Leafs with no extra forwards, but that has been the norm for a large part of the season. If Gardiner is still unavailable, and he is not going to practice on Tuesday, so it looks like he’s not in the game, Marincin or Justin Holl can draw in on the third pair again. Dermott performed very well, so we should expect to see him play top four minutes again if necessary. No decision is expected on Gardiner until Wednesday morning.
Lines today, which you should definitely not take as seriously as everyone will:
#Leafs lines at practice:— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) January 21, 2019
Lindholm-Gauthier-Holl (holding for Moore)
Gardiner (back spasms)