This article was last updated on March 18, 2023
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Noel Acciari injured and maybe out
Due to a hit from Carolina’s Jesse Puljujarvi in the closing seconds of the first period, Noel Acciari was forced to sit out the remainder of the Toronto Maple Leafs’ game against the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday night. The Leafs have stated that this was a precautionary measure.
Although Puljujarvi appeared to brace for impact, Acciari did not seem prepared for the open-ice collision that caused him to take a hit to the jaw. Despite this, no penalty was assessed on the play.
Acciari, who was acquired as part of the Ryan O’Reilly deal, has three points in 12 games for Toronto. Prior to joining the team, he had 10 goals and 18 points in 54 games with St. Louis.
Acciari had been a key contributor on Toronto’s fourth line alongside Zach Aston-Reese and David Kampf. However, with the Leafs opting to go with 11 forwards and seven defensemen, their fourth line had become one of the team’s most consistent groups. Despite Acciari’s absence, Aston-Reese had one of his best games as a Leaf, scoring two goals on Friday.
If Acciari is unable to return to the lineup, Toronto could consider calling up Alex Steeves or Bobby McMann, both of whom have NHL experience this season. Nevertheless, Acciari has already made a positive impact on the team in just a few weeks. The Leafs will have to wait and see what his status will be moving forward.
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