Lombardi close to return

Matthew Lombardi’s year-long wait is nearly at an end.

The centre didn’t want to jinx himself, but there seem little doubt this weekend he will get into his first game since last October. It has taken that long to clear the cobwebs from a severe concussion and then get back into proper playing shape.

“If I’m feeling 100% and confident, there’s a good chance I could play,” Lombardi said of facing the Detroit Red Wings in the coming home-and-home pre-season games. “But if we’re not sure and maybe things aren’t going as well, then we’ll make a decision. I don’t think it’s a negative either way. The progress has been great (far ahead of off-season projections). Whether I get in this week or on the next little while (Toronto opens the regular season on Oct. 6), it’s great.

“This was a big week for me in terms of how I felt with the body contact. You have to feel 100% about this going in, you have to be confident. If I feel that way, I’m going to play. Since the beginning I haven’t wanted to put an exact date on it. Because you never really know what can happen with this kind of injury.”

Club doctors and the coaching staff must also give their blessing on Friday. Lombardi can play centre or wing, which helps now that a couple of forwards are hurting.


84 Responses to Lombardi close to return

  1. Kessel_Leafs48 says:

    id wait a bit before trading bozak… kadri injured, connollys injured (gonna get used to saying that alot probably), lombardi questionable although its a good sign he's playing tonight, and now macarthur suspended. our lineup probably wont but could end up like this :

    lupul- bozak- kessel

     frattin- grabo- kuli
     brown – boyce- armstrong
     orr – dupuis – rosehill 
     Not sure how well that lineup will do, and if we traded bozak right now and lombardi gets hit tonight and causes a set back from returning to early.. not quite sure who will be poised to take over, boyce on the top line? or having colborne start first line minutes in the first game of the season ? dilema, id wait until all the centres are healthy for a couple games before trading bozak

    good trade, just wait a week or two.

  2. leafy says:

    Burke has managed to assemble an excellent blueline.

    Here's a comparison of the Leafs' blueline this year compared to 2002, when the Leafs managed 100 points.

    2002: Kaberle, McCabe, Aki Berg, Cory Cross, Jyrki Lumme, Anders Eriksson, Nathan Dempsey.

    2011: Schenn, Phaneuf, Franson, Aulie, Gunnarson, Liles, Gardner.

    I like the blueline WAY more this year. With the goaltending more or less solid, this year is all up to the forwards. I still want a bona fide no. 1 center!!! Where's Sundin when you need him?

  3. blaze says:

    Imagine plugging a Sundin in his prime into this line-up, too bad…

  4. blaze says:

    Hell toss in a Caputi or D'Amigo for good measure.

  5. leafy says:

    We'd be back in business.

  6. MystifoLeafs says:

    No need to worry, if you believe the rumor, they are now reporting that Dallas wants some time to see what their roster can do. So I guess that means if were in playoff contention hes not up for trade but if we bomb call back. 

  7. blaze says:

    Dallas has no hope of playoff contention. Joe knows this, keep your young pieces and rebuild.

  8. Leafs_Wallace says:

    We're one power forward away from having some serious jam up front.  This deal would make sense if we play well out of the gate. As for Dallas needing to evaluate their lineup they basically gave away James Neal in the midst of a playoff run so who knows what Nieuwendyk is thinking.  Dallas might just want to shed salary.  Have to figure Nieuwendyk and Burke/Fletcher are close given that MSLE groomed Joe.

  9. leafy says:

    MacArthur gets 2 regular season games suspension.

    Some Leaf fans will be upset, but the league has got to protect the players. Safety is first and foremost. That's my opinion.

  10. MystifoLeafs says:

    Id be pulling a Mario Lemieux if I said I was angry. Honestly for now I say continue with the crackdown.

  11. MystifoLeafs says:

    Well that's another point Wallace, no point in trading for Morrow if we go on another one of those 10 game losing streaks out the gate. But like you stated about we really have a lack of vet leadership and although Morrow could start falling in numbers he is still a good voice for the team. 

    My prediction: This happens in November or early December. 
  12. LeafsFTW17 says:

    I'm not just saying this because I'm a leaf fan but that was not worth a suspension.  He dived, wheres the suspension for that?
    Honestly I'm getting sick of Shanny, he's suposed to suspend dirty hits, not contact.

  13. blaze says:

    Fighting is next on his list, wtf Shanny where did you nutsack go?

  14. Leafs_Wallace says:

    He's been tamed by the beast of public opinion he'll do whatever the media tells him too.

  15. Leafs_Wallace says:

    Big talk from the boy that cried derp.

  16. mapleleafsfan says:

    I would love this. Even though Morrow is getting old he'd give us a legitimate number 1 line. Two thirty goal scorers on the top line with 2 (maybe 3) on the second would be huge. He'd also open up more room for kessel than lupul does which could maybe make kessel hit 40. If we could somehow add a real number 1 center to the mix we'd be laughing. 

    Even still just with Morrow,
    Morrow – Connolly – Kessel
    Mac – Grabo – Kulemin
    Lupul – bozak/lombardi – armstrong 
    that's a pretty solid 1/2 punch with an awesome third line.
    Also like someone said, Morrow would be a great mentor for Kulemin as a banger, two-way scorer. 
  17. mapleleafsfan says:

    Meh it was a headshot even if it was embellished.. If someone had done that to one of our players we'd be fine with the suspension. I'm alright with the decision even though it sucks to lose mac for a couple.  

  18. mojo19 says:

    I mean, he's 32 he's not really that old. Definitely lots of good years left in him. He's one of the games best two-way players. Awesome power forward. He's one of my favourite players, I would be pretty *****ing pumped if we got Morrow.

    What was the source of this rumour again? Because seriously, Morrow would be a perfect fit on our top line and it would allow Lupul to slide down

    Morrow, Kessel, Kulemin, MacArthur, Lupul, and Armstrong would rank right up there amongst the top group of wingers in the league. It would give us flexibility too. If say MacArthur is struggling then you can easily slide Lupul onto that line. Or even Morrow on the Kulemin line. That would be a dirty shut-down pair to match up against the Malkin's and Stamkos's of the league. They could shut them down while always being a threat offensively.

    Morrow and Kulemin would be money in the bank.

  19. mojo19 says:

    Just think if we had defense like this back in the days when we had forwards like Mogilny, Sundin, Roberts, Corson, Tucker, Renberg, Nolan, Domi, Reichel…. (Ron Francis, Joe Nieuwendyk….)

    anyway’s, it would be nice to put it all together.

  20. mapleleafsfan says:

    The more I think about it the more I hope there's something behind it.. It was from hockeybreaks twitter, but they went on to say don't expect anything until November so Dallas has time to asses their team more.. 

    I wonder what we would have to give up though… It would take quite a bit more than gunnarson… If Morrows available the leafs won't be the only team interested by any means.. As much as I'd like him if it meant giving up a better prospect as well I think I'd rather target a center. 
  21. mojo19 says:

    Wallace is right, but you missed one step.

    The NHL owners and executives are bowing down to the media and public opinion, and Shanny is doing whatever they say.

  22. mapleleafsfan says:

    I love this Rosehill – Depuis – Brown line… They just have no fear, all of them pile to the net, they can all skate well and they fight when they need to.. It's so fun to watch these guys just crash the net and then watch everyone try to pull them off their goalie. 

  23. reinjosh says:

    I probably will. I don't really have anything against him I'm just not exactly enamored with him. I see him as a stop gap but that could very well change in the next couple of months. 

  24. reinjosh says:

    That would be just gold. Move Lupul down to the third line and we have three effective scoring lines. 

  25. mojo19 says:

    Ya for sure, nice grinders

  26. leafy says:

    Yeah good line. I like Brown especially. Reminds me of Randy McKay, both the mustache and style of play.

  27. leafy says:

    Reimer needs to work on a problem he also had last year…giving up big fat juicy rebounds.

  28. mapleleafsfan says:

    That game was painful.. Our PK was absolutely brutal.. Hopefully grabo is fine.. If hes out for any time we are so f.cked.

  29. GO_LEAFS_GO_Noni says:

    NO WAAAY if reimer was known for something last year, it was his puck control. he barely gave away rebounds. 

  30. leafy says:

    Yes way. He was giving up way more rebounds than he should, often on routine shots.

    Even though he was mostly stellar last year, he was below average on rebounds.

  31. reinjosh says:

    Agreed, I'm hoping that Allaire and him are working on it as its arguably his weakest point.

  32. reinjosh says:

    Is it just me or do we always seem to have a guy with an awesome mustache?

  33. leafy says:

    Yeah, Ian White, Wendel Clark, Lanny McDonald to name a few.

Leave a Reply