The post Returning Joseph Woll Makes Instant Statement for Maple Leafs appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

Thankfully, Joseph Woll is back. He made a triumphant return to the ice on Thursday, getting the start for the Toronto Maple Leafs against the Arizona Coyotes. After being out of the lineup for 35 games due to an ankle injury he suffered on December 7th, Woll rebounded as if he’d never been away. It was obvious that he was back – almost immediately in the game.

Throughout the game, he showed his determination and skill by making 30 saves in a 4-2 victory over the Coyotes. At first, the game seemed like it would be just a calm warm-up for harder things later in the week. However, give the Coyotes credit. They came to battle; and, about halfway through the game, they took over. The only thing they couldn’t do was get the game-tying goal past Woll.

Related: Ilya Lyubushkin Traded to Maple Leafs, Salary Retained by Ducks

Woll Returns, He’s Recovered… and So Are the Maple Leafs

The decision to start Woll was part of the plan outlined by Head Coach Sheldon Keefe. His return to action was a significant milestone in his recovery, and it just felt as if it would be one in the Maple Leafs’ journey as well. There’s just something about the young goalie that makes everyone calm around him.

There’s no doubt it. He’s the number-one goalie for the Maple Leafs. He’s also a key to their success. Yes, Ilya Samsonov can be good, and his play in the Maple Leafs’ recent seven-game winning streak wasn’t just smoke and mirrors. He can stop the puck when he’s on. However, something about Woll brings a sense of calm to a game. He’s that good. He settles everything down.

Before the Injury, Woll Was the Maple Leafs Number-One: He Still Is

Before his injury, Woll had established himself as the Maple Leafs’ primary goalie. His record seems mediocre at 9-5-1. However, the numbers tell a fuller story. He has a 2.75 goals-against average and a .918 save percentage. His solid performance in Thursday’s game showed once again that he has the abilities in the crease to lead this team.

Joseph Woll Maple Leafs Coyotes

Despite facing some challenges during the game, including goals by ex-Maple Leafs Alexander Kerfoot and rising star Logan Cooley, Woll remained composed. He showed his ability to handle pressure situations and make crucial saves when needed. His return to the lineup brings stability and confidence to the Maple Leafs’ goaltending situation. He gives coach Keefe a trustworthy option.

Looking ahead practically, Woll’s return adds depth to the Maple Leafs’ goaltending corps. He joins Samsonov and Martin Jones in the team’s three-man goaltending rotation. With his great performance in his return from injury, Woll has shown that he is more than capable of contributing to the team’s success and making a positive impact on the ice.

There’s More to Woll Than His Skill

But the bigger thing with Woll is that you can throw him out there and expect a solid game – time after time. He just settles everything and everyone down. Woll’s comeback game against the Coyotes was a resounding success. He played a key role in the Maple Leafs’ win.

Even better, his return to the team helps them continue their pursuit of success in this season’s playoffs. He just sorta carries with him the sense that, if he’s in the net, the Maple Leafs have a chance in the postseason.

Related: Maple Leafs Mark Giordano: Proud To Be NHL’s Oldest Player

The post Returning Joseph Woll Makes Instant Statement for Maple Leafs appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

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