Maple Leafs place goalie Frederik Andersen on IR

The Maple Leafs will have to improvise when it comes to goalies.

Toronto placed starter Frederik Andersen on injured reserve with a groin injury, the team announced Thursday.

Andersen has been out since Dec. 22, which means Dec. 23 will be when the league recognizes the start of his absence.

Leafs backup Garret Sparks is also out after he was put in concussion protocol Wednesday when he was hit in the mask with a puck during practice.

Andersen is 20-9-1 this season, with his 20 wins the the second-highest in the NHL. He also has a .923 save percentage.