Maple Leafs’ Nick Robertson’s Injury Woes Continue

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nick Robertson was injured in the game against the Los Angeles Kings on Dec. 8. Sadly for the 21-year-old, this is the third injury in three seasons that has interrupted his development. There has been a lot of praise throughout his young career thus far, and it seems that every time he is close to solidifying his spot on the NHL roster, another roadblock occurs.

Nick Robertson Toronto Maple Leafs
Nick Robertson, Toronto Maple Leafs (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Unfortunately for Robertson, each time he has been injured, the timeline for his return has been significant, which has forced him down the depth chart and kept him one step away from becoming an everyday NHL player. To be only 21 years old and have three serious injuries is not the best way to start a career.

Knee Injury in NHL Debut

On Jan. 16, 2021, Robertson made his regular season debut with the Maple Leafs during the COVID-19-shortened season. He and his team were facing off against the Ottawa Senators when he suffered a knee injury. It happened when he was hit by Senators’ forward Drake Batherson. Robertson was caught off balance, and when he was hit, his knee was driven into the boards, causing him to leave the game. Afterward, Keefe gave an update on his injury and said the timeline was four weeks.

Related: Maple Leafs’ Nick Robertson at Risk of Losing NHL Roster Spot

This was tough news for fans of the team because the Maple Leafs’ rookie was finally with the club and expected to have a permanent place in the lineup. Sadly, this would be the first of three serious injuries in his career. His first NHL season was cut to just six games due to injuries, and it didn’t get any better for him going forward.

Robertson Fractures His Leg

On Oct. 17, 2021, Robertson was injured in a game against the Manitoba Moose in the American Hockey League (AHL). This injury was the most serious one of his career, as he suffered a non-displaced fracture in his right fibula. It occurred on a play in the offensive zone; he and his teammate were behind their opponent’s net with two of their defensemen. Robertson got hit by those two Moose defenders, causing him to fall awkwardly on his right leg. Instantly, you could see the pain that he was in as his right leg snapped out from under his body.

This fracture kept him out of the lineup for 10 weeks, and during his recovery, he had several setbacks. When the news was announced that he was out with a right leg fracture, it was frightening, as the team’s most promising prospect had just recovered from an injury earlier that same year, and now he was out again long term.

Robertson’s Shoulder Injury

On Dec. 8, 2022, Robertson left the game against the Kings with an apparent injury after a hit from defensemen Matt Roy. It happened during a sequence where the Leafs had the Kings hemmed into their zone for almost two minutes. Robertson and Roy went into the left corner, and the hit caught Robertson off balance, causing him to go hard into the boards. He laid on the ice for a few seconds before the refs blew the whistle to stop the play. Unfortunately, he was favouring his shoulder, as he was slumped over in pain, needing to be helped off the ice.

Maple Leafs head coach Keefe gave an update about Robertson after the game saying “he will miss significant time”, he then added, “feel for the kid”. He acknowledged the fact that his promising young forward has had a career decimated with injuries, which has hurt his ability to become a regular in the NHL lineup.

Related: 3 Reasons Nick Robertson Must Make the Maple Leafs Roster

Nick is the younger brother of Dallas Stars’ sharpshooter Jason Robertson, who has been lighting it up the last two seasons. Unfortunately for Nick, his injury struggles have hampered his career and growth and prevented him from following in the footsteps of his brother, so far in their young careers. Although his career could still turn out to be a successful one, it must be tough to watch your brother be one of the better goal-scorers in the league and your career be plagued by injuries.

Substack Subscribe to the THW Daily and never miss the best of The Hockey Writers Banner