Leafs hopeful to have Tyler Bozak in lineup for playoffs

The Leafs hope to have Tyler Bozak in the lineup for Game 1 of their playoff series against the...

The Leafs hope to have Tyler Bozak in the lineup for Game 1 of their playoff series against the Bruins. (Dave Abel/QMI Agency/Files)

LANCE HORNBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 3:56 PM ET

TORONTO - After a four-year wait to experience his first NHL playoff action with the Maple Leafs, Tyler Bozak would hate to miss Game 1 against Boston.

Toronto’s No. 1 centre re-appeared at practice on Monday for the first time in almost a week, but went to the dressing room before the serious drills began at the MasterCard Centre. If he can’t play, it’s back to Nazem Kadri centring leading goal man Phil Kessel and big left winger James van Riemsdyk, while Mikhail Grabovski would replace Kadri between Joffrey Lupul and Nikolai Kulemin.

Faceoffs are where the crafty Bozak would be missed most. At 52.6%, he’s far more valuable than the spotty Kadri.

Before many had arrived at the rink, Bozak was working alone in the stands in a pass-and-shooting cage and he was among the early birds on the ice. But he departed after about 20 minutes of the hour and a half practice.


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