Leafs recall AHL defenseman on emergency basis

Published April 15, 2022 at 12:44
BY BEN HODGSON
The Toronto Maple Leafs picked up a very important two points in a tough playoff-style matchup against the Washington Capitals on Thursday, but it would appear as though they did not walk away unscathed. The team announced via Twitter today that defenseman Kristians Rubins has been recalled from the Toronto Marlies on an emergency basis. The problem is, we don't know what the emergency is.

Rubins has been strong for the Marlies this season, tallying 10 points over 52 games and playing a strong defensive game. The 6'5 220lb Latvian defender has worked his way up through the ranks from the ECHL's Growlers and finally played his first NHL games this season.

The fact that this is an emergency recall suggests that at least 2 of the Leafs defenders from last night's game against the Capitals may be dealing with injuries, or at least not at 100%. Otherwise Rubins wouldn't be able to be recalled in this manner. According to the rules around emergency call-ups, the Leafs would need to have 5 or fewer defensemen available to play. Holl was a scratch last night, but can be slotted in for one injured player. Rubins likely represents the potential a second injury.

(ii) Emergency conditions shall be established when the playing strength of the Loaning Club, by reason of incapacitating injury or illness or by League suspension to its Players is reduced below the level of two (2) goalkeepers, six (6) defensemen and twelve (12) forwards. Proof of the existence of the emergency conditions including the incapacity shall be furnished to the Commissioner of the League upon request made by him. - NHL rulebook



Rumors have begun swirling and fans are obviously in a panic. The game against the Capitals was a hard hitting affair, the Leafs threw 42 hits, lead by Timothy Liljegren's 5. They took 39 hits from Caps players. Jake Muzzin had a heavy collision with Tom Wilson along the boards and was seen holding his hip at points throughout the game. Liljegren had a collision with Mark Giordano that looked painful. Giordano was hit on the chin by Garnet Hathaway's helmet on an awkward play that knocked Gio's helmet loose. Any one of these incidents could be the cause of the mystery injury that's facilitated this call-up.

As of right now, nothing has been announced regarding injuries short or long term. The Leafs don't play until Saturday, so it could be a case of having a body around just in case one of their 7 regulars isn't able to play. We will continue to monitor the situation and pass along any updates as they become available.

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