Toronto Maple Leafs Recall Kasperi Kapenen and Send Down Frederik Gauthier

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BRIDGEPORT, CT - JANUARY 21: Kasperi Kapanen #24 of the Toronto Marlies brings the puck up ice during a game against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at the Webster Bank Arena on January 21, 2018 in Bridgeport, Connecticut. (Photo by Gregory Vasil/Getty Images)

The Toronto Maple Leafs have recalled Kasperi Kapanen from the AHL Toronto Marlies after sending down centerman Frederik Gauthier earlier today.

Toronto Maple Leafs Recall Kasperi Kapanen and Send Down Frederik Gauthier

The move comes as a surprise to many fans in Leafs Nation. Gauthier, 22, has appeared in nine games with the Leafs this season, recording a goal. In 27 games with the Toronto Marlies this season, Gauthier has registered five goals and three assists.

Leafs Nation thought Gauthier was the fourth line centerman of the future. A big, strong and plain scary centerman like Gauthier was what the Leafs needed in their lineup. The Leafs brass may see things a bit differently than their devoted fan base. Most fans worry that this may affect Gauthier’s development, but the message from the Leafs’ camp is to “trust the plan”.

What Does Kapanen Bring To The Leafs?

Kapanen, 21, previously skated in six games with the Maple Leafs this season, registering two goals. He has appeared in 27 games with the Toronto Marlies this season, recording 12 goals and 10 assists for 22 points while being named to the 2018 AHL All-Star Classic. In 2016-17, Kapanen appeared in eight regular-season games with the Maple Leafs and scored one goal before adding two goals in six Stanley Cup playoff games with the club. He also recorded 43 points (18 goals, 25 assists) in 43 games with the Toronto Marlies last season and had an additional eight points (2 goals, 6 assists) in nine Calder Cup playoff games.

Kapanen will give the Leafs bottom six an offensive boost. Ideally, he will slate in on the fourth line with Connor Brown and whoever centers them. It looks the Maple Leafs are trying to create more of an offensive lineup after their inability in past games to score goals. Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock is trying to shake things up and this move is a testament to that notion.

Kapanen seems determined to stay up with the big club this time around.

 

 

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Christian Holmes is a senior writer for Grandstand Central, as well as an editor for Last Word On Hockey. Holmesy, as he is known by his peers, works to facilitate intimate one-on-one conversations with some of the most interesting personalities in sports. Not to mention, Holmes does also have a keen eye for writing powerful and thought-provoking stories as proven by his story about his lifelong love affair with hockey being published in TSN Hockey Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie’s and sports writer Jim Lang’s new book entitled "Everyday Hockey Heroes: Inspirational Stories On and Off The Ice". If you’re looking for a good laugh or even to learn a thing or two about life, you can follow him on Twitter below.

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