WINNIPEG - The Toronto Maple Leafs plan to send goaltender Jonathan Bernier on a minor-league conditioning stint.
Coach Mike Babcock said Wednesday that Bernier would go to the American Hockey League's Toronto Marlies for 10 days once starter James Reimer is healthy.
Bernier is 0-8-1 with a 3.28 goals-against average and .888 save percentage this season.
His struggles got so bad that the Leafs called up Garret Sparks to make his NHL debut Monday.
Sparks stopped all 24 shots he faced in a 3-0 win over Edmonton and earned the opportunity to start again Wednesday night at the Winnipeg Jets.
Bernier could play in four of the Marlies' next six games, beginning either Friday night in Rochester or this weekend at home against the Manitoba Moose.
While in the AHL, Bernier will continue to receive his NHL salary and count against Toronto's salary cap.
Under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement, a team can send a player on a conditioning stint of up to 14 consecutive days with that player's approval.