Richie, Mana, Engvar and Seni - Sports1
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Richie, Mana, Engvar and Seni

A lot has happened with the Toronto Maple Leafs, though probably most NHL teams in these turbulent times as we all do our best to deal with the pandemic. Not only is the NHL schedule being revised daily based on the impact of COVID-19 on players and fans, and then – in turn – on fans, but even if NHL players have been double-vaccinated, it doesn’t appear to be able to prevent the virus from testing positive. Positive. Fortunately, these vaccines appear to prevent serious illness.

As a result, the Maple Leafs only appeared to take players out of COVID-19 NHL protocols, but several days later, several more players unexpectedly tested positive and entered those same protocols. The movement of players in and out of the roster appears to be constant.

related: 4 changes Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe should make this season

In this issue of Maple Leafs News & Rumors, I’ll try to help Maple Leafs fans keep up with the movements of these players and the constantly changing roster that those movements result in.In an update released at noon on Friday, Mitch Manner and Pierre Envall Tested positive for COVID-19 and will not be playing tonight.

Mitch Marner, Toronto Maple Leafs (Amy Owen /hockey writer)

The two positive tests led to a roster change. Also, there is the case of Nick Ritchie, who was exempt and cleared. What’s wrong with him now? In the near future, the answer is likely to be: not much difference.

Item 1: Nick Ritchie passes waiver Friday afternoon

Nick Ritchie passes waiver Friday. However, it doesn’t look like he’s going to change much in the near future. Given the other changes in the roster, the prediction is that he’ll stay on the team and – as always – continue to be used in the way he’s been used before. Now, with Mana and Ngwali testing positive for COVID-19, it’s not that the Maple Leafs can’t use another forward.

Rich was on the ice in practice Friday and looks set to play Saturday against Colorado. He skates with David Kampf and Jason Spezza. The fact that he clears the waiver will give the Leafs some roster flexibility and potential cap savings.

Second: Mitch Marner tests positive for COVID-19

Mitch Marner has been included in the COVID-19 protocol after testing positive for the virus. Mana has only played two games after recovering from a shoulder injury that collided with Jack Muzin in practice. He left LTIR (Long Term Injury Reserve) on Jan. 1 and has played two games since.

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He has not scored in the two games since his return. However, he has scored 6 goals and provided 15 assists (21 points total) in 26 games this season. While it’s considered a good season for most NHL players, it’s well below Mana’s performance over the past few seasons.

Fortunately, Mana has been experiencing mild symptoms, according to coach Sheldon Keefe. Although Manner is considered an everyday, he will at least miss tonight’s game in Colorado. From what I understand, he needs two negative tests to return to the team.

Item 3: Pierre Engvall also joins the COVID-19 protocol

Pierre Engvall joins Marner Friday’s COVID-19 protocol. Ngvar will also miss tonight’s game, and he may miss more as his body recovers from the virus. The 25-year-old winger appeared to be jailed by the coach for lackluster performances last season, but has enjoyed a solid season with third-line center David Kempf.

Pierre Engvall Toronto Maple Leafs
Pierre Envall, Toronto Maple Leafs (Amy Owen /hockey writer)

Kampf has been a great addition to the team and shines in his defensive defensive role. He seems to carry Engvall with him and allows Engvall to use his size and speed to add real value to the team.

related: Today in Hockey History: January 8

Ngvar, who has scored four goals and six assists (10 points) this season, has averaged 13 minutes on the ice this season, placing him sixth from last. Maple Leafs fans should expect him to return to a regular role when healthy. Similar to Marner, Engvall is a day job.

Item 4: Marner and Engvall will be replaced by Seney and Anderson

In a corresponding move to include Marner and Engvall in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol, the Maple Leafs pulled two players into its cab team and potentially into its game-day lineup. Those two players are Brett Seney and Joey Anderson.

Germany Rubtsov Lehigh Valley Phantoms Joey Anderson Binghamton Devils
Joey Anderson, when he played for the Binghamton Devils (Jess Starr/hockey writer)

Marner and Engvall’s minutes were unavailable. Saini has only played in one NHL game this season, while Anderson has played in two.It is unclear how they will be deployed, but in fact Ondrej Case Still being unable to play could also affect their time on the ice.

What’s next for Maple Leafs?

As I mentioned before, this road trip will be a welcome test for the team. They’ve been cruising and winning games they should have played against understaffed teams.

Now that they are understaffed themselves, it will be interesting to see how they react. One criticism of the team in the playoffs last season was that they played too easily in the 2020-21 regular season and didn’t develop the toughness they need during the difficult times the playoffs could bring.

related: Maple Leafs’ 2021-22 Atlantic Division faces tough season

The team could gain some resilience over the next four games.

old professor

Senior Professor (Jim Parsons, Sr.) has taught for over 40 years in the Faculty of Education at the University of Alberta. He is a Canadian boy with two degrees from the University of Kentucky and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas. He is now retired on Vancouver Island, where he lives with his family. His hobbies include playing his hockey card and simply being a sports fan – hockey, Toronto Raptors and CFL football (think Ricky Ray is the embodiment of how a professional athlete should behave).

If you’re wondering why he doesn’t use his real name, it’s because his son — also Jim Parsons — is hockey writer First and ask Jim Sr. to use another name so readers don’t confuse their work.

Since Jim Sr. worked in China, he adopted Mandarin to mean teacher (teacher). The first character lǎo (old) means “old” and the second character shī (teacher) means “teacher”. The literal translation of lǎoshī is “old teacher”. This became his pen name.Today, except for hockey writer, he teaches graduate research design at several Canadian universities.

He looks forward to sharing his insights on the Toronto Maple Leafs and how sports can be more fully integrated into life. His twitter address is https://twitter.com/TheOldProf


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