Terrible News Has Hit The Toronto Maple Leafs

Published November 30, 2023 at 1:56 PM

News just broke that Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe has announced veteran defenseman Mark Giordano's absence from the lineup, as he nurses a broken finger on a week-to-week basis.

In Tuesday night's game against the Florida Panthers, the 40-year-old defenseman exited with an "upper body injury." Giordano has contributed one goal and five points in 19 games this season, marking his third campaign with the Leafs.

To fill Giordano's void, the Leafs have called up 28-year-old defenseman Max Lajoie from the AHL's Toronto Marlies.

This adds to the Leafs' defensive woes, with John Klingberg and Timothy Liljegren already sidelined. Speculation surrounds Klingberg's future with the team, while Liljegren remains out for weeks due to a lower body injury from a hit by Boston Bruins captain Brad Marchand.

With Giordano, Klingberg, and Liljegren facing prolonged absences, the Leafs' defensive lineup has been significantly depleted. While Morgan Rielly, TJ Brodie, and Jake McCabe provide stability, lesser-known names like Lajoie, Simon Benoit, and Conor Timmins will need to step up.

Coach Keefe is likely to heavily rely on the top pairing of Rielly and Brodie, managing their ice time until the return of Liljegren and/or Giordano. Benoit and McCabe are poised to form the second defense pairing, while Lajoie and Timmins are anticipated to handle third pairing duties.

With the team seeking veteran presence on the blue line, trade rumors involving the Calgary Flames' Nikita Zadorov or Chris Tanev might gain traction amid the Leafs' defensive challenges.
November 30   |   135 answers
Terrible News Has Hit The Toronto Maple Leafs

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