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NHL Toronto Maple Leafs

Toronto Maple Leafs Will Need Joffrey Lupul Before Season Ends

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

While the Toronto Maple Leafs have played fairly well to start this 2013 National Hockey League season, there is one piece of their team that they need back before the playoffs arrive. That player is Joffrey Lupul, who is out right now with an injured right forearm and isn’t expected to return for another couple weeks. There is no reason for Lupul to rush back because we have seen how quickly a forearm can get re-injured in other sports but Lupul has to be back before the end of March for Toronto to have a real chance in the playoffs.

Lupul has not played much over the last five seasons, being able to play more than 28 games just once during that time. When Lupul was healthier last season, he scored 67 points in 66 games. The problem is that Lupul can’t stay healthy though and while he is a talented player when he is on the ice, he needs to stay out there. Toronto has a very important game on Thursday night at the Carolina Hurricanes and it is a game where the team will wish Lupul was healthy.

It is going to be up to players like Phil Kessel to score more goals and James van Riemsdyk to keep up his early-season goal scoring. Lupul will come back to a talented team and will need time to get back into the flow but he can’t take too long especially with how short this season is. The Maple Leafs need Lupul and Lupul needs to get healthy before he proves to be too much of a risk to have around.

Andy Schmidt is a columnist/writer for RantSports. Follow him on Twitter @ASchmidtSports, like his Facebook page or add him to your network on Google.