Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen did not travel with the team and will miss tonight’s game against the Buffalo Sabres due to an upper-body injury. Backup goaltender Curtis McElhinney is expected to get the start. The exact timeline for Andersen’s injury has not yet been announced.
Andersen didn’t make the trip to Buffalo, but Matthews did
Auston is still wearing that red ? jersey … will miss an 8th straight game tonight
Leafs 3-2-2 during his latest absence
Sparks is here and will back-up tonight pic.twitter.com/tK44EmDOVU
— Mark Masters (@markhmasters) March 15, 2018
Frederik Andersen Out With an Upper-Body Injury
Andersen left Wednesday nights game against the Dallas Stars after the first commercial break of the second period. Head coach Mike Babcock said the injury occurred when Stars forward Alexander Radulov ran into Andersen in the first period.
Toronto has leaned heavily on Andersen this season. The netminder from Herning, Denmark has started 59 games for Toronto sporting a 33-18-5 record, with a 2.79 goals against average and a .919 save percentage. The Maple Leafs acquired Andersen from the Anaheim Ducks on June 20th, 2016. This is Andersen’s second year in Toronto. He played 66 games last year, finishing with a 33-16-14 record.
What This Means
Curtis McElhinney will start the majority, if not all, of the of Toronto’s games in Andersen’s absence. McElhinney has only played in back-to-back situations or in relief of Andersen this season so his workload is about to substantially increase. In just 14 appearances this season McElhinney has a 8-4-1 record with a 2.27 goals against average and a .929 save percentage.
To backup McElhinney, the Maple Leafs have recalled goaltender Garret Sparks from the Toronto Marlies on an emergency basis. In 34 starts for the Marlies, Sparks is 23-8-1 with a 1.84 goals against average and a .934 save percentage.
— Leafs PR (@LeafsPR) March 15, 2018