Reimer injury leaves Leafs fans fretting

Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:52am EST
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By Steve Keating

TORONTO (Reuters) - It should have been an almost perfect night for Maple Leafs fans on Monday after a 5-2 win over Philadelphia extended Toronto's unbeaten run to four games but celebrations at the Air Canada Centre were tempered by an injury to netminder James Reimer.

In a lockout-shortened season where injuries may prove critical, the loss of Reimer for an extended period would likely come as a crippling blow to the playoff hopes of Toronto, whose win over the Flyers (5-7-1) was just their second at home this season.

Reimer is arguably the biggest reason behind Toronto's surprisingly strong start (8-5-0) and a shudder went through the crowd as he was helped off the ice with an apparent groin injury after stretching to make a save early in the second period.

Toronto coach Randy Carlyle tried to defuse any hysteria, saying initial indications were that the injury was not as bad as it looked.

"Reimer has a lower body injury and we don't think it's that serious as this point, he shouldn't miss any extended period of time," Carlyle told reporters. "He's going to miss some time but it probably won't be a long drawn out process."

Ben Scrivens replaced Reimer in net and did not let the Leafs down, protecting a 3-1 lead and giving up just one goal on 33 shots to lead Toronto to their first win over the Flyers in six meetings at the Air Canada Centre.

As the first choice netminder for the National Hockey League's only billion dollar franchise, Reimer's injury will be heavily scrutinized on Tuesday.

"We'll have to make a decision based on our assessment tomorrow if we recall another goalie," added Carlyle.   Continued...

Toronto Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer stands while the Canadian national anthem is played as fans hold a giant Canadian flag before his team plays the Philadelphia Flyers in their NHL hockey game in Toronto, February 11, 2013. REUTERS/Mark Blinch