Toronto Maple Leafs: Did an Injury Cost Zach Bogosian His Job?

Zach Bogosian, Toronto Maple Leafs (Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports)
Zach Bogosian, Toronto Maple Leafs (Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports) /

Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Zach Bogosian is out for the rest of the season, and that may include the playoffs

The Toronto Maple Leafs have officially made the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season. This past offseason, general manager Kyle Dubas wanted to add size and depth on defense. To do that, he signed Zach Bogosian.

When he arrived, he played just as advertised. He laid the body, was steady defensively, and was an impactful locker room presence. Unfortunately for him, a shoulder injury cost him the rest of the regular season.

Missing time due to injury (especially for depth/low-end players) can end with someone stealing their spot. Think of goaltender Jack Campbell taking over for Frederik Andersen.

A possible replacement on the Toronto Maple Leafs Roster

Bogosian’s roster spot got filled with a well-known name. One that many have been calling for since his impressive rookie season. That is defenseman Rasmus Sandin.

He has been sensational when playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs  minor league team, the Toronto Marlies. He has played with the team the past two seasons. He put up 43 points in 72 games. That was enough for a call-up last season, where he put up eight points in 28 games.

He is known for his offensive prowess, but the way the Leafs are looking, they have enough of that. Toronto needs defensive help and physicality. Luckily for head coach Sheldon Keefe, Sandin proved he developed physically. It was shown on a huge reverse hit on Blake Wheeler on Saturday.

That hit dropped the jaws of all Leafs fans, including myself. If you watch the Marlies, you will know that Sandin has always been able to lay the body. Saturday was just another play for the 21-year-old.

Defensively he has played decent, but he could play better. Then again, there is only so much you can ask from someone that young. His offense and physicality are already enough to earn a roster spot, so improvement defensively would only solidify his position.

Luckily for him, he has eight games left before the playoffs to work on it. If he plays well enough, Keefe might keep him in the lineup even when Bogosian gets healthy.

Did Bogosian lose his roster spot?

Come playoff time; there is no “groom him for the future” thinking anymore, especially with the Leafs competing for a cup. Whoever offers what Keefe is looking for will be in the lineup.

I will say it impacts Bogosian’s roster spot more for next season rather than this season. His contract expires this offseason, and Dubas could decide not to bring the bruiser back in favor of Sandin. In the playoffs, it is more about the matchups. If you’re playing the Winnipeg Jets (especially how the matchup has been lately), playing a heavier Bogosian could help the team.

Next. 3 Leafs Who Should Be Worried About Their Job Security. dark

So, is it time to buy a Rasmus Sandin jersey? I would say start saving up for the expensive jersey come next season. Bogosian likely will not return to the Toronto Maple Leafs.