Falling Like Flies
Pavel Kubina will be out a minimum of four weeks and that could be extended depending on further tests. From JFJ's description of the diagnosis as "simply through manipulation" it sounds like the knee might still be too swollen to perform an MRI. This is bad news for a player that was bedding himself into the defence corps pretty well. It's nice to see the Leafs go from 'Who will win a spot on the defence' to 'who will survive playing defence'.
That brings the IR to:
- Carlo Colaiacovo (fatigue)
- Brendan Bell (assault)
- Andy Wozniewskit (shoulder)
- Staffan Kronwall (bad skates)
- Pavel Kubina (clumsy 'bury boy)
The popular opinion is that Bell might be ready to go on Thursday in New Jersey. If not, then the alternative is either putting Belak on the backend, which proved to be a disaster in the first game of the season, or to call up a Marlie like Brad Brown or Marc Moro. My choice is Brown because he is my friend's parents' neighbour and that would make two Leafs that are just 2 degrees of separation away from me.
Update: Pavel will be out four to six weeks with a strained MCL but will not need surgery! The scenarios are rife for dealing with the injury. To the above you can add trying to sign Brian Leetch with the money saved via the LTI clause (Thanks Lou!) or making a trade. Seeing as the Leafs have only $1M under the cap and Leetch made so much last season I would guess that JFJ will do as he did last year and work with what he has available. That means that Belak will most likely move back for a game or two until Bell returns and Suglobov will make his return to the fourth line.