Dec 9, 2010, 12:00 PM EDT
While the Toronto Maple Leafs weren’t exactly the best team in the NHL (5-5-1 then) when Dion Phaneuf went on the shelf with a deep laceration on his left leg on November 2nd, they’ve clearly missed their big defenseman/captain. Without Phaneuf, the team went 5-8-3 and earned yet another round of firing talk for their coach Ron Wilson.
Now, it’s not accurate to assume that Phaneuf (0 goals, four assists for four points in 11 games with a -6 rating) would have made much of a difference during that streak, but the Leafs will almost certainly be glad to have him back beginning tonight against the Philadelphia Flyers.
TSN reports that the big defenseman will be back along with beleaguered goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere, though it’s unclear if Giguere will start or if Jonas Gustavsson will play in back-to-back games at this point. It’s going to be tough for the middling Maple Leafs to avoid two straight losses to the cream of the crop in the East, but getting Giguere and Phaneuf back should at least improve their chances.
- Gomez goes full circle by rejoining Devils on tryout basis 4
- Under Pressure: Jimmy Howard 5
- Looking to make the leap: Anthony Mantha 17
- It’s Detroit Red Wings day on PHT 22
- Under Pressure: Nathan Horton 8
- Will Johansen be the latest Overhardt holdout? 24
- It’s Columbus Blue Jackets day on PHT 15
- Shanahan tasked with ending years of collapses 9
- Looking to make the leap: Peter Holland 1
- Under Pressure: Randy Carlyle 5
- NHL-to-Vegas talks gaining steam (68)
- Report: Bruins need to make a trade (61)
- Sounds like San Jose handled stripping Thornton’s captaincy really well (43)
- Fanspeak: Mats Sundin voted greatest Maple Leaf in franchise history (43)
- Fanspeak: Lemieux (stunner!) voted greatest Penguin in franchise history (41)