Maple Leafs Get Boost For Defensive Corps

The Toronto Maple Leafs will be getting a boost for their blueline on Saturday night as the oldest player in the league, Mark Giordano, will be returning to the lineup after missing a month with a broken finger.

Head coach Sheldon Keeefe said he expects Giordano back in the lineup, and the 40-year-old himself says he feels like he’s got a little extra juice after all the time off.

“Anytime you get a break from games, you don’t have to deal with that stress or anxieties that games bring, so I think mentally it can be a reset, and of course physically.. I feel like I have some good jump in me,” said the 18-year veteran.

“All of a sudden now we’ve got to make some tough lineup decisions,” said Keefe, with his full complement of defenders. Giordano was lining up at Friday’s Practice in the top 6 next to Timothy Liljegren, while William Lagesson and Conor Timmins lined up as the 7th and 8th D-men.

Keefe is thrilled to have Giordano back, though. “His experience, his leadership presence, all the things that he brings to us, (including) how he can move the puck up in all three zones quickly and efficiently.”

Photo: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports