Since getting sent down on January 11, Mark Arcobello has been on an offensive tear for the Toronto Marlies.
He failed to register on the scoresheet in two games for the first time this season, before recording five straight multi-point outings. He’s carried on that level of offensive output by extending his point streak to eight games. Ranked fourth in overall scoring, averaging 1.29PPG, Arcobello is one of the hottest players in the AHL right now. He missed the last game in Manitoba due to the flu, but other than that he’s never been in better form for Toronto’s affiliate.
Josh Leivo was loaned back to the Marlies just before the All-Star break. Taking part in the AHL-All Star Challenge, Leivo scored two goals for the North Division but they would fail to make the final. Leivo played just three times for the Marlies since being returned, but he’s racked up eight points in that time, including a four-point return against Binghamton. Leivo continues to lead the Marlies in primary even strength assists and is tied for second on the team in ES points. It’s not been all sunshine and roses, as Leivo was partly culpable for Manitoba’s OT winner in the last game.
The Leafs will bring Arcobello and Leivo on their road trip through Western Canada starting Tuesday in Calgary. With Tyler Bozak staying in Toronto after sustaining a clip to the head from Mika Zibanejad on Saturday in Ottawa, Arcobello could see bigger minutes than what he’s played previously this season — an average of 10:16 per game — as the Leafs‘ already-weak depth at center is looking rather paltry.
Joffrey Lupul (lower body) and Shawn Matthias (head) — the latter throwing the possibility of a deadline deal in doubt — also won’t make the trip out West due to injury, which means the Leafs‘ forward group in general is skeletal. All of Leivo, Clune and Arcobello should feature throughout the trip, with Leivo and Arcobello likely to fill holes within the top 9.
Despite the excellence of Nylander and Brown since their returns from the IR and the subsequent injuries to some prominent forwards on the big club, Leafs management continues to stay patient with their younger assets.
Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock confirms that Tyler Bozak, Joffrey Lupul & Shawn Matthias will not travel out west this week. #TMLtalk
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 8, 2016