There’s mostly good injury news for the Maple Leafs and especially Blue Jackets heading into Sunday’s decisive Game 5 (8 p.m. ET on NBCSN; livestream). The Blue Jackets having Zach Werenski in the lineup against the Maple Leafs for Game 5 is the biggest bit, but there’s more.
Werenski, Murray, Korpisalo in for Blue Jackets in Game 5
Considering how much bad injury news the Blue Jackets absorbed in 2019-20, it must be refreshing to get some positive updates for Game 5.
- Maybe most importantly, Zach Werenski is in.
The offensively-gifted defenseman missed the Maple Leafs’ blistering Game 4 comeback, including overtime. So it was fair to wonder if Werenski could suit up for the Blue Jackets against the Maple Leafs in Game 5.
Now, it’ll probably be fair to wonder if Werenski is at full-strength. That’s the nature of the beast during the postseason, pandemic or not.
On one hand, Murray hasn’t contributed really anything offensively. (He has zero points, and just one shot on goal.) On the other, Murray had been mostly breaking even all-around in this series. Murray’s expected to pair up with Dean Kukan in Game 5.
The team’s website indicates that John Tortorella said that Elvis Merzlikins might be injured, so maybe it’s not that interesting? Korpisalo began the series on a strong note, but the Maple Leafs got to him quite a bit more as it went along. We’ll see how Korpisalo and the Blue Jackets respond to that stunning Game 4 loss, and the pressure of facing the Maple Leafs in that decisive Game 5.
Maple Leafs may get Muzzin back soon — just not vs. Blue Jackets in Game 5
From the Maple Leafs’ perspective, good news hinges on beating the Blue Jackets in Game 5.
Muzzin won't play tonight but if Leafs advance he should be ready for next round. https://t.co/eVuXcrMUDo
— James Mirtle (@mirtle) August 9, 2020
There’s a chance the Maple Leafs could get Andreas Johnsson for Game 5, by the way:
A potential development hours before Game 5: The #leafs have activated Andreas Johnsson off injured reserve.
There's been no confirmation that he's playing — and this would be ahead of schedule following his February knee surgery — but Johnsson is now eligible to dress.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) August 9, 2020
That’s great if Toronto can advance, but that’s an enormous if. Expect plenty of drama on NBCSN on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET. (Again, you can watch it live here.)
(8) Toronto Maple Leafs vs. (9) Columbus Blue Jackets (Series tied 2-2)
Sunday, Aug. 2: Blue Jackets 2, Maple Leafs 0 (recap)
Tuesday, Aug. 4: Maple Leafs 3, Blue Jackets 0 (recap)
Thursday, Aug. 6: Blue Jackets 4, Maple Leafs 3 (OT) (recap)
Friday, Aug. 7: Maple Leafs 4, Blue Jackets 3 (OT) (recap)
Sunday, Aug. 9: Blue Jackets vs. Maple Leafs, 8 p.m. ET – NBCSN (livestream)