Toronto Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson uttered a phrase this morning that Buffalo Sabres fans became all too familiar with over the last eight years:
Tim Connolly is hurt.
Wilson alerted the media this morning after Toronto’s practice that Connolly would miss the next 10-14 days with an unspecified upper body injury. Connolly had already missed the first eight games of the year with a shoulder injury, though Wilson was quick to explain this current issue has nothing to do with the shoulder.
“It’s totally unrelated to the earlier injury,” Wilson said (courtesy the Globe and Mail). “He got hurt in the game the other night [against Boston]. I said it’s upper body; I’m not going to get into specifics. He got hurt on the first penalty kill; he left the ice for a bit and then he felt okay. He played regularly in the game and I didn’t even think about it until I got an email yesterday that he was going to be out 10 days to two weeks.”
Staying healthy — or the inability to stay healthy — has defined Connolly as of late. After starting his career as a virtual iron man (he only missed three games in his first four seasons), the Syracuse native has been besieged by injury, clearly illustrated by his TSN transactions/injuries/suspensions page:
It’s expected that Tyler Bozak will fill Connolly’s center position on Toronto’s top line between Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul. Wilson also said the Leafs will “probably call someone up” to fill the roster void, which could be Toronto Marlies sensation Joe Colburne, the key returnee from last spring’s Tomas Kaberle deal that leads the AHL in scoring with 19 points in 12 games.