Nazem Kadri doesn’t know if he’s coming or going

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Just a day after demoting him to the AHL, the Toronto Maple Leafs recalled Nazem Kadri to replace the injured Colby Armstrong (ankle) for tonight’s game in Boston.

The move caps a series of odd twists and turns in the ongoing Kadri-Leafs affair. Two days ago, Kadri told the Toronto Star “I don’t think it’s really necessary to go down to the Marlies.” His opinion differed from that of Leafs GM Brian Burke (or, coach Ron Wilson), who felt it so necessary that he sent Kadri to the Marlies the very next day.

But now, Kadri’s back with the parent club (he was actually on the same flight to Boston as Ray Ferraro) and, ready or not, he’s going to be thrust into a prominent role. Prior to getting hurt, Armstrong was playing on the third line with Matt Frattin and Matthew Lombardi, so it’s possible Kadri could play there. But with reports that Clarke MacArthur will also miss tonight’s game, it’s possible Kadri could jump up into a top-six role (MacArthur had been skating with Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolai Kulemin on Toronto’s second line.)

It could end up being a tough night for Kadri, who hasn’t played a game since suffering a knee injury on Sept. 27. The thought behind his demotion to the AHL was to get him some playing time, but that plan went awry when Armstrong and MacArthur got hurt.