The Toronto Maple Leafs’ newcomer Ondrej Kase is questionable for the game tonight against the New York Rangers. He was banged up blocking a shot in Tuesday’s game vs. the Nashville Predators. However, there were differing reports on the extent of his injury.
Another report suggested that Kase was evaluated and x-rayed after blocking the shot, but the results came back clear. That report suggested that head coach Sheldon Keefe had given Kase a day off for rest. Right now, the word is that Kase was held out of practice Wednesday; however, he could still be in the lineup against the Rangers.
Not the First Time Kase’s Been Hurt Blocking a Shot
After playing only three games last season with the Boston Bruins, it might have taken Kase a while to get off the mark this season, but he’s hit his stride recently. The Czech winger, who’s currently part of a shutdown third line with his childhood best friend David Kampf, is on a four-game point-scoring streak. During those games, he’s scored three goals and an assist.
In the tweet below, you can see Kase congratulate Kampf on his goal during the Predators’ game.
Kase Is a Tireless Worker on the Ice
One thing Maple Leafs’ fans have learned about Kase is that he’s constantly hard-working. He even works hard during every shift and drives the puck to the net consistently. Given his game, it isn’t unusual that Kase would be a bit banged up. Earlier in November, he was also questionable after blocking a shot last week in a game on November 8 against the Los Angeles Kings.
However, he played in the next game against the Philadelphia Flyers and scored a goal. That goal ended a five-game pointless streak. Given his history and the faith the coaching staff puts in him, don’t be surprised if he suits up against the Rangers.
Kase Seems to Have Settled into His Third-Line Role
Kase has four goals on the season. Given his offensive gifts and talents, there was some thought about moving him up to a top-six role. However, he’s proven to be so valuable partnering with Kampf in the shutdown role – which is something coach Keefe has been seeking for two seasons now, that there’s a good chance he’ll stay in that role.
Maple Leafs’ fans will see soon if Kase will be good to play. However, if he isn’t able to, it could be a chance for Kirill Semyonov to draw back into the lineup.
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