Ilya Lyubushkin, NHL News, Toronto Maple Leafs

Maple Leafs’ Ilya Lyubushkin Injury Update After Scary Hit

In an unfortunate turn of events for the Toronto Maple Leafs, defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin‘s return to the team took an unfortunate twist during his first game back. Lyubushkin, starting his second stint with the Maple Leafs, faced an early setback as a head injury forced him out of the game in the second period.

The incident occurred when Matt Rempe delivered a massive hit on Lyubushkin, prompting concern as the defenseman was forced to leave the game and questions lingered over the severity of the injury. Head coach Sheldon Keefe expressed his dissatisfaction with the hit, noting that Rempe covered a considerable distance, left his feet, and made contact with Lyubushkin’s head, leading to the injury.

You can see in the video below, Rempe does leave his feet to deliver the hit. Many are expecting supplemental discipline from the NHL DoPS to follow.

Later in the game, Maple Leafs veteran forward and resident tough guy Ryan Reaves challenged Rempe to a fight. Recognizing the need to address the hit on Lyubushkin, Reaves and Rempe engaged in a spirited tilt, a battle that many believed was likely inevitable heading into Saturday’s contest.

Injury Update on Lyubushkin Following the Game

Postgame, Lyubushkin was seen walking around the dressing room, providing some relief as he communicated with teammates and Leafs GM Brad Treliving. While he acknowledged the injury, Lyubushkin expressed optimism that it wasn’t too severe, as conveyed to teammate Ilya Samsonov.

Related: NHL Rumors: Canucks, Flames, Maple Leafs, Oilers

Further updates on Lyubushkin’s condition are hopefully coming soon, offering more clarity on the extent of the head injury. Meanwhile, the Maple Leafs are already dealing with another defensive setback as Mark Giordano undergoes evaluation for a head injury earlier this week.

Ilya Lyubushkin Anaheim Ducks
Ilya Lyubushkin, Anaheim Ducks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Amidst these challenges, reports indicate that the Maple Leafs are still actively engaged in trade deadline talks ever after the Lyubushkin acquisition. Prior to tonight’s game, there were reports the team remained interested in bolstering their defensive lineup. It’s crystal clear now that’s a sound plan. With injuries becoming a significant concern, the need for depth as they aim for a successful playoff stretch is evident.

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