Morgan Rielly moved one step closer to making his NHL debut with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The 19-year-old who sat out the first two games of the season as a healthy scratch was paired with Jake Gardiner at practice amongst the team’s top-six defencemen on Friday. With Mark Fraser (hamstring) on long-term injury reserve — meaning he must miss 24 days or 10 games — it appears that Rielly will play his first game against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

If Rielly plays nine games his entry-level contract would kick in and he would likely not be returned to junior. Because of his age he cannot be sent down to the minors.

The Leafs also recalled forward Jamie Devane from the Toronto Marlies although it is unclear whether he will be in the lineup on Saturday.

More to come after practice.