Nikita Zaitsev Expects To Return Versus Islanders

Published January 30, 2018 at 2:45 PM

"Not only does Nikita Zaitsev add some offense from the Toronto Maple Leafs blue line with four goals and 10 points in 34 games, but he also gives head coach Mike Babcock another trustworthy defender.
Even with missing the last 17 games due to a broken foot, Zaitsev is still second on the team in average ice time with nearly 23 minutes per game. He is second among defenders with a +8 goal differential while starting 56% of his shifts in the defensive zone.
Zaitsev returned to the ice on Monday and was back on again for today's morning skate. Head coach Mike Babcock said that the team will make a decision on whether or not Zaitsev will play against the New York Islanders after tomorrow's morning skate. Zaitsev told reporters that he expects to play Wednesday night.
Zaitsev was pairing with Travis Dermott today. The only two pairings featured Jake Gardiner with Ron Hainsey and Andreas Borgman with Connor Carrick. It appears that Roman Polak will be watching tomorrow's game from the press box.


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