Ryan Reaves and T.J. Brodie help an injured Joseph Woll off the ice
Photo credit: Sportsnet

Leafs goaltender Joseph Woll meets with the media to discuss his recovery

Published February 15, 2024 at 10:42

We may finally be approaching a reprieve from the turmoil that has surrounded the Leafs' crease this season. Ilya Samsonov seems to have shaken off the confidence issues that torpedoed his start to the season and Joseph Woll is approaching a comeback.

It's not all sunshine and rainbows, though, as Martin Jones is now dealing with an injury, forcing the Leafs to recall Dennis Hildeby from the Marlies on Tuesday. Hildeby is not expected to see any NHL action, barring an injury, but thankfully, as the whole group trends toward health and prosperity, we could see the best from the Leafs goaltending group yet.

Woll's return can't come fast enough. The rookie netminder has been the best of the Leafs netminders by a wide margin this season. He had claimed the starter's net with an 8-5-1 record and and excellent .916 SV% during the Leafs' roughest stretch before a high-ankle sprain took him out of action on December 7th. Woll has returned to practice with the team, and spoke to the media for the first time since his injury today.

"Definitely ankle for a goalie is not an exciting one. Anything that puts you back in a position that bothers it is difficult, but it's a process & I've been making good strides. Right now it's just getting back up to speed with playing after two months off." - Joseph Woll

Goaltenders obviously put a lot of stress on their lower bodies. Anything that hinders their ability to push and move can obviously be a huge issue. Not only that, but mentally, you have to be able to trust your body. The more practice time Woll can get in right now, and the more he can move and work that ankle without pain, the better it will be for him when he does return to game action.

The other aspect of this that is very interesting is that the Leafs are playing considerably better hockey now than they were when Woll went down with his injury, so if he can return to form relatively quickly, the Leafs are going to be a tough team to beat between now and the end of the season.

February 15   |   797 answers
Leafs goaltender Joseph Woll meets with the media to discuss his recovery

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