|Luca Caputi fires a puck off the crossbar during some shooting drills. (Jack Boland /QMI AGENCY)
TORONTO - Colby Armstrong's pain is Luca Caputi's gain.
With Armstrong out of the lineup for at least a month, Caputi has been called up from the Marlies and will line up alongside Tim Brent and Fredrik Sjostrom for Thursday's game against the Boston Bruins at the TD Garden.
An MRI conducted on Armstrong's finger Wednesday revealed the feisty winger will have to undergo surgery, a process the team estimates will sideline him for 4-6 weeks. Armstrong, who left Tuesday's 3-1 victory over the Florida Panthers in the first period, has one goal, 11 penalty minutes and is minus-2 in eight games this season.
Armstrong's injury has opened the door for Caputi, who was very impressive in training camp.
"It's exciting," Caputi said. "I played my first game as a Leaf in Boston last season and now I'm playing my first game since being called up in the same rink."
Caputi, for the record, drew an assist in his Maple Leaf debut in Boston last March.
Along with Armstrong, the Leafs were also missing winger Kris Versteeg during practice Wednesday at the MasterCard Centre. Assistant coach Tim Hunter, identifying the ailment as a back issue, said Versteeg was day to day and should be able to lace up the blades against the Bruins.
One Leaf who will be looking for a big night is Phil Kessel, who has registered just one point against his former club since being traded to Toronto 13 months ago.
Asked about Kessel's struggles against the Bruins, Hunter replied: "Phil was just trying to show( the Leafs) organization he was worth the deal. He was just trying too hard."
While the Leafs would not reveal their goaltending plans, Jonas Gustavsson indicated he likely would get his second start of the season.