Leafs’ John Tavares expected to be ready for season opener

After suffering an oblique injury in training camp, John Tavares was given a three-week recovery period. This suggested he would miss the first games of the season for the Toronto Maple Leafs, leading to several questions about who would step into the top six in his absence. Now, just two weeks later, the Maple Leafs captain should be ready for Wednesday’s opener after all, telling reporters, including TSN’s Mark Masters, who he is delighted to be there “from the start”.

It’s been a great season for Toronto after being knocked out of the first round again, and Tavares’ health will be a key factor in the team’s success. The 32-year-old suffered a frightening concussion and knee injury during the team’s playoff series against the Montreal Canadiens in 2021 and missed much of his off-season preparation because of it.

While he still managed 27 goals and 76 points the following season, many criticized his play and pointed to Tavares’ $11 million cap as one of the biggest challenges facing the Maple Leafs. face when trying to exorcise their playoff demons. It’s been a generally healthy offseason for the veteran forward until this injury, so it’ll be interesting to see if his game improves or if this recent setback takes its toll.

Either way, with him in the lineup, things feel a bit more natural for Toronto’s forward lineup, with Alexander Kerfoot in the third-line pivot role and David Kampf at center for Zach Aston- Reese and Nicolas Aube-Kubel in the fourth.

Sports Grp1

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