TORONTO – The Maple Leafs don’t have much to offer these days on the status of injured winger Leo Komarov. Timothy Fosu-Mensah Jersey
. “If he doesn’t skate then don’t ask me about him,” said head coach Randy Carlyle with a chuckle over the weekend. “If he skates then we can start talking about him.” Fact is Komarov has skated only once in the nine days since he was concussed by Alex Ovechkin late last month and there appears no clear return in sight. The 27-year-old has missed the past three games and will surely sit out at least the next two – the Leafs playing a back-to-back set with Calgary and Detroit beginning on Tuesday. The team can’t exactly say when he might be able to return because, given the unpredictable nature of concussions, they just dont know. But even the weekend now seems optimistic with another back-to-back on the docket and Komarov still yet to take part in even one practice since the injury. “We don’t know,” said Leafs assistant Peter Horachek following practice Monday, one that Komarov remained out from. “It’s hard to tell what the situation [is] with him right now.” Komarov, who remains around the team, had been working out, riding the bike, playing ping-pong with teammates and filling “his face” with breakfast as Carlyle gleefully noted last week. But he remains away from the group on the ice. Carlyle continues to cite team and league concussion protocol – mostly without specifics – referring often to an unspecified time-frame where the concussed player is to remain symptom-free before he can rejoin teammates on the ice. Based on the two cases in Toronto this season that time-frame would seem to be in and around four days. His symptoms then subsiding, Komarov was held off the ice until last Thursday, four days after he was initially clipped by Alex Ovechkin’s right shoulder on a Saturday night at the ACC. Daniel Winnik was held out for the same period when he was nailed by Avalanche defender Jan Hejda early last month. Unlike Komarov, however, Winnik suffered no concussion (nor subsequent symptoms) on the play. “I think everyone’s more cognizant of it,” Winnik said of the danger with concussions. “You see Sidney [Crosby], ‘Hey I don’t have a concussion’ and then he plays three days later then gets hit again, now he has a concussion. We were more preventative against the possibility of getting one from a hit [afterward].” When Winnik returned to the ice on that fifth day after the initial injury, which saw him knocked unconscious on the Pepsi Center ice, he was fine and played 18 minutes a night later against Boston. “I think we knew I was fine before that, but they just wanted to make sure that when my heart rate really rose to game-like situations that it would be fine,” Winnik said. Komarov didn’t feel right after his only skate (ahead of a Thursday tilt with New Jersey) and he’s been kept out since. “We certainly would like to have him back, but we’ll just let it play out,” Horachek said. Inked for four years and nearly $12 million in the summer, Komarov continues to lead the team in hits (just one shy of 100 in 23 games) and remains tied for third in even-strength points. His feisty presence alongside Winnik on the Leafs first-unit penalty kill has been missed, though the group managed to hold the Canucks off the board in six opportunities Saturday (Winnik totaling more than eight minutes). Such an effort (alongside that of Jonathan Bernier, who made 44 saves) helped the club to its second win in the past three without Komarov and fifth of seven overall. It appears they’ll have to make do for at least a little while longer; how long exactly remains unclear. Wayne Rooney Jersey
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