The Maple Leafs undersold their success in January and February without point-a-night winger Joffrey Lupul.
But in the wake of a season-high four-game losing streak, Lupul’s return is being hailed as a hedge against losing their playoff status. Lupul’s anticipated comeback Saturday against Winnipeg, which could pass the Leafs with a regulation win, gives Toronto a full lineup for the first time since Jan. 23. That’s the night Lupul was downed by friendly fire, a Dion Phaneuf rocket that broke his forearm.
“I’m sure I’ll be in,” said Lupul, who received a doctor’s clearance and just as meaningful, given coach Randy Carlyle his word that he’s ready after a week of regular practice. “Unless there’s some sort of change, I’m preparing to play.
“There will be some rust, but I’m definitely looking forward to making an impact.”