Conor Timmins Headed For MRI After Preseason Injury

Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Three games down, five to go. Is the preseason too long? Or is it too short?

I’ve been preaching that preseason should be shortened for a while now, but I think I am coming around to the idea that you need all of these games to decide who sticks and who doesn’t.

See Nick Robertson, who tore up the ice in preseason, to be basically ineffective in the regular season—going from a guy who scored a point per preseason game to someone who scored every three games (on average) during the regular season.

To me, this year’s version of that same scenario is Conor Timmins. He is leading the NHL in preseason scoring after playing 2 of the 3 contests and is making a case to be a regular NHL player.

In the Leafs first preseason matchup against the Ottawa Senators, he posted 2 assists. Timmins showed he was capable of earning helpers and acting as a playmaker in the 25 games he played on the Leafs last season by scoring 14 points in those minimal appearances. That’s roughly a 45-point pace, which is huge for a defenseman.

More recently, Conor had himself a four-point night against the Buffalo Sabres in the second pre-campaign game for Timmins and third for the club.

He scored 2G and 2A while averaging 21:33 in ice time per game with 3:36 in average powerplay time per game.

He didn’t score any points against Montreal on Friday night’s game and unfortunately absorbed a hit that has caused a lower-body injury, but I don’t know how he doesn’t earn a job when he comes back.

The Leafs need scoring from the blue line, which became very apparent near the end of the regular season, and while Morgan Rielly went on an absolute tear in that 11-game postseason stretch, he only scored 4 goals last year, and he is more of a pass-first guy. Toronto should employ a mix of shooters throughout the lineup because sometimes, just firing it on is what needs to be done instead of making more passes.

Conor had a 56.51 Expected Goals For % (XGF%) and a 58.5 HDCF% (High Danger Chances For %) with an actual GF% ( Goals For %) of 52.78, posting 2 goals and 7 assists in 25 games and 350 ish minutes with the Leafs last year, meaning he won his minutes by those metrics and is clearly useable as an NHL regular.

The problem is the Leafs have enough NHL-quality defensemen to fill their roster already, and especially this year, with the addition of John Klingberg, who is known for offensive prowess, the right side of the defensive depth chart is log-jammed.

This has made it hard for Timmins to secure himself a spot in Toronto’s top 6.

You might think sending him to the Marlies would make the most sense to stay in game-ready condition, but that isn’t an option unless he passes through waivers.

I don’t believe that, after watching Conor Timmins up to this point in the preseason that he would clear waivers and be able to stay with the organization. Another team is almost sure to be able to find room for a player making 1.1M and playing that well.

It’s very unfortunate for Conor to sustain yet another injury in his career, but Sheldon Keefe noted that  “He has put in a lot of work, and he has dealt with a lot of injuries along the way, so he is used to bouncing back from these things”

Keefe added,

“I think the foundation he has put in with the work he has put in hopefully will allow him to have a quicker recovery and a quicker adjustment to get back up to game speed, but for sure, a guy like him who has worked so hard and is competing for a spot to have a setback is tough news for him and for us.”

Let’s hope he is right, and we see Timmins back on the ice sooner rather than later because he’s making a very strong case to stick.

All stats from Naturalstattrick.

The Colonization of Robidas Island Leafs Late Night

WELCOME BACK TO LEAFS LATE NIGHT! Presented by Inside The RinkRoscoe / Suthy / Biehner- Hats on Hats- Dumb Game, Dumb Loss- 5 Piece Tendies- Targets Aquired- EA + GTANEW MERCH IS AVAILABLE!JOIN OUR DISCORD!Remember to follow us on Twitter @LeafsLateNight & IG @LeafsLateNightCheck out Mike, Josh, and Nathan's articles on the Leafs + many more! insidetherink.comHow to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
  1. The Colonization of Robidas Island
  2. The Hat Store Called, They're Runnin' Outta Hats
  3. William Saves The Kingdom
  4. According To McPlann
  5. To Punt or Not To Punt

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Lindy Ruff Fired

BREAKING: Lindy Ruff Fired

The New Jersey Devils make a change behind the bench

Read More
Zach Bogosian in Minnesota Wild 78s gear

Which Players Are the Wild Likely to Re-Sign?

The Minnesota Wild are unlikely to make the playoffs this year, although there still is a slight chance. That means that Trade Deadline might be a quieter affair this year with more selling for draft picks than anything else. Bill Guerin went through a flurry of re-signings at the beginning of the season, but who […]

Read More
Red Wings Prospect Check In March

Detroit Red Wings Prospect Check-In

Checking in on the Detroit Red Wings prospects as March kicks off

Read More