Khavanov's rib muscle latest injury

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:44 AM ET

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- As the losses pile up, so do the aches.

Already missing Bryan McCabe, Darcy Tucker and Eric Lindros to injuries, the Maple Leafs suffered yet another scare last night in their game against the Minnesota Wild when defenceman Alexander Khavanov left late in the first period.

While the veteran was unable to return, x-rays on his sore ribs were negative.

Khavanov plans to test the ribs by skating in the next two days before deciding if he will be able to play against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

"I think it's all right. At least nothing is broken," Khavanov said. "It's just the muscle on the left side.

"One of their big guys stepped on me after I was cross-checked while trying to clear the puck. I couldn't breathe at that moment."

After Khavanov left the game, the Leafs were forced to use five defencemen for the remainder of their 5-3 loss to the Wild.

Khavanov said that the Leafs must battle through this four-game losing skid.

"No one will fix this but us," he said. "The sooner we realize that, the sooner we'll overcome it.

"We just have to keep battling. There is nothing else we can do."

Should Khavanov not be ready in time to face the Senators, candidates to be called up from the Marlies of the American Hockey League include Andy Wozniewski and Jay Harrison.


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