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Maple Leafs look like a team lacking in desire to band together

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01-25-2013, 07:33 AM
  #1
hockeywiz542
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Maple Leafs look like a team lacking in desire to band together

http://www.thestar.com/sports/leafs/...d-together-cox



Dion Phaneuf is the captain of the Maple Leafs but his is on a team showing signs of being unwilling to follow their leader into battle.

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It wasn’t the defining moment of the game.

But it sure was telling.

It told you that while certain elements may have changed about the Leafs, some very important things have not.

The moment came with about 11 minutes gone in the third period of Thursday’s game against the New York Islanders. Leaf captain Dion Phaneuf wrapped his arms around Isles star centre John Tavares and rode him hard into the corner in the Leaf zone.

Nothing outrageous, but certainly a hard play, and one that seemed to leave Tavares winded.

Immediately, two Islanders made a beeline for Phaneuf, who must’ve known retribution might be coming, but chose to skate away from it. Four other Leafs seemed not to smell trouble at all, but nor did they defend against the two remaining New York players as the sixth Islander goal of the night was snapped by Matt Moulson past James Reimer, who had relieved Ben Scrivens in the Leaf net.

At the whistle, the Isles declined to celebrate and instead, led by Matt Carkner, went after Phaneuf. Only Mike Kostka chose to get involved in the resulting scrum, while three others — Mikhail Grabovski, James van Riemsdyk, Nik Kulemin — looked around as though they’d heard their names called by loved ones in the stands. The 7-4 Islanders triumph, of course, didn’t turn on this play.

But it was certainly an echo of last season, another incident that gave the impression that Phaneuf isn’t beloved by his mates, and certainly one that suggested this is a team that, even on the heels of an impressive win in Pittsburgh the night before, lacks the collective will to dig down and band together in difficult moments.

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01-25-2013, 07:40 AM
  #2
drewski1988
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Wow....a Damien Cox article I kind of actually ..... agree with?
It seems a lot of the Leafs roster are fine to be pushed around, and are soft on the puck and in the corners.
There are some exceptions:
Kadri, Komarov, Brown, Orr, McClement, Kostka, Phaneuf.
Feel free to mention anyone else, and support them if you think otherwise.

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01-25-2013, 07:41 AM
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meng666
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He's way off. That play was all about Dion not scrapping right after the hit. Grabo is focused on the puck and the other guys all grab somebody after the goal; were they supposed to start fighting the guys they grabbed or something? Dion ran from the fight and coughed the puck up, pretty obvious. He's usually great though. He was probably tired and didn't want to fight Carkner.

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01-25-2013, 07:46 AM
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blasted_Sabre
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One loss people. Two nights ago we were world beaters.

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01-25-2013, 07:50 AM
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dubey
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Anyone remember that Kulemin fight against that Hurricanes guy?

lol

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01-25-2013, 07:52 AM
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achtungbaby
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It was such an odd play. A dirty hit (Dion let up a little, but you still can't hit from behind like that), 2 islanders go after Dion, Dion skates away, Dion gets the puck, Dion gives it away, Islanders score, Dion turtles from fight... So much fail in 20 seconds.

It was weird not seeing the usual all hands on deck scrum when the Isle players went after the Leafs captain. Maybe Cox has a point here but I'm sure he'll get the usual kill the messenger treatment a sports scribe gets around here when delivering a less then pleasant point of view about Toronto.

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01-25-2013, 07:53 AM
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dubplatepressure
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dubey View Post
Anyone remember that Kulemin fight against that Hurricanes guy?

lol
This. Grabo has his own serious of infamous moments. JVR just got here. Do they play like they've been playing together for 5+ years? No. Because they haven't.

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01-25-2013, 07:54 AM
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johnny_rudeboy
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Even do I dont know if Phaneuf is liked or not among his mates that article was a bit weird seeing as I doubt Cox knows anything about it either. And it is hard to come to the conclusion he came to after viewing the incident.
Kessel was jumped in the Buffalo game after accidentally bumping in to Miller and the team looked as uninterested in to escalating that to as they did after Phaneuf hit Tavares. In fact, they never really stand up for eachother in that desired way one would want, why I dont know.

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01-25-2013, 07:58 AM
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hotpaws
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Dion rode JT hard from behind and then was more interested in protecting himself rather than actually playing . Slapping a C on a guy doesn't make him a leader and Cox blaming teamates for Dion wussing out of a fight is pure stupidity .

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01-25-2013, 08:08 AM
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Hey Damien, cool last name. Btw another terrible write up.

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01-25-2013, 08:09 AM
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Brewsky
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Man I missed the game last night and would've liked to see a YT of this.

Phaneuf just was absolute garbage last night from what I've heard though, giveaways to goals, getting beat in battles.

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01-25-2013, 08:11 AM
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Oh so you mean the team that was super soft last year and traded away a defenceman who is one of the bigger hitters in the league is still soft?

A shocking development, Damien.

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01-25-2013, 08:19 AM
  #13
Ash35
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The Toronto media is an Knee Jerk as most of it's fans. It's ridiculous.

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01-25-2013, 08:23 AM
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hockeywiz542
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewsky View Post
Man I missed the game last night and would've liked to see a YT of this.

Phaneuf just was absolute garbage last night from what I've heard though, giveaways to goals, getting beat in battles.
Dion Phaneuf hits John Tavares. Jan 24th 2013

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGAa0OUg944

Dion Phaneuf turns over the puck and the Islanders score

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTzTumbIo7w


Last edited by hockeywiz542: 01-25-2013 at 08:31 AM.
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01-25-2013, 08:28 AM
  #15
YearsintheWilderness
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnny_rudeboy View Post
Even do I dont know if Phaneuf is liked or not among his mates that article was a bit weird seeing as I doubt Cox knows anything about it either. And it is hard to come to the conclusion he came to after viewing the incident.
Kessel was jumped in the Buffalo game after accidentally bumping in to Miller and the team looked as uninterested in to escalating that to as they did after Phaneuf hit Tavares. In fact, they never really stand up for eachother in that desired way one would want, why I dont know.
Good point. Cox is the least likely person in the entire world to have any insight into it. The fact that he has been covering the Leafs for a few decades, has likely interviewed most of the players numerous times, has dozens of contacts in the hockey world, sees the Leafs play live, well, every single game they play, is likely contacted by people with even more direct access to players and who may want to pass along various tidbits of information, has seen these types of scenarios play out dozen of times during the time he has been observing and writing about hockey...


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01-25-2013, 08:28 AM
  #16
Anthrax442
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I think last night was a case of a very tired team that got spanked so hard, they were just running out the clock. This season will be this way. I find that in most cases after a very emotional win, they come back drained. I don't know who to blame for this, because they came out fine, they just lost it in the middle of the 2nd and it was all downhill from there. Cox is over dramatizing again.

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01-25-2013, 08:28 AM
  #17
blue82
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this is all bs..just get an NHL material goalie and all this negative talk will go away

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01-25-2013, 08:28 AM
  #18
Donmega
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I wish we actually had a captain that deserves it, like Mats Sundin did. Not a pretend captain who hasn't earned the stripes.

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01-25-2013, 08:37 AM
  #19
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Nope. Cox is right on this one. They are getting shelled at that point. They should be pissed to begin with. Personally I would have lost it if on the ice at that point.

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01-25-2013, 08:42 AM
  #20
Montreal Shadow
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The Leafs look like a team in desperate need of a goalie. Contrary to popular beliefs, not just any goalie can bail you out every time. Toronto either needs a very solid goalie or a defense that is capable of shutting down the opposition when they're leading by 2 goals. The Blues for example put on a literal clinic once they get a comfortable lead. I don't think Toronto has the D's to do that yet.

The forwards are dynamic but when the whole team is always looking back to see if their goalie is still standing on his legs, you're gonna have problems. Can't have a team scared of their men in net. I also don't think going after Luongo is such a good idea. Might turn out great or abysmal.

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01-25-2013, 08:45 AM
  #21
Parkdale
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash35 View Post
The Toronto media is an Knee Jerk as most of it's fans. It's ridiculous.
I've found Cox to be one of the better reads in the Toronto media. Not that I usually agree with him, but he does have some balance in his bon mots in comparison to other scribes and talking heads. Most of the Toronto media write and say eye-rolling crap most of the time. Who if anyone in the media do you "trust" more often than not?

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01-25-2013, 08:53 AM
  #22
number72
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Phaneuf is a "rat". THis is exactly what Burke said was ruining the game. And the sad part is our captain is now sinking to Kaleta and Carcillo level with this type of play.

I lost a great deal of respect for his game after this hit. Please clean up your game and be a captain.

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01-25-2013, 08:57 AM
  #23
Morguee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hockeywiz542 View Post
Dion Phaneuf hits John Tavares. Jan 24th 2013

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGAa0OUg944

Dion Phaneuf turns over the puck and the Islanders score

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTzTumbIo7w
Ummm, just watched the video again, JVR, Kulemin and Kostka all had guys, Grabo was watching while Carkner and Dion were already on the ground. What did Cox want them to do exactly?

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01-25-2013, 09:06 AM
  #24
cyris
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WTF???
I do not want our best defenceman and the captain of our team getting in a fight with a legit HW like Carkner. What purpose would seeing him getting his nose broken have served?

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01-25-2013, 09:06 AM
  #25
Anthrax442
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morguee View Post
Ummm, just watched the video again, JVR, Kulemin and Kostka all had guys, Grabo was watching while Carkner and Dion were already on the ground. What did Cox want them to do exactly?
Exactly. Grabs was facing the other way when the Isles attacked Dion. Cox is getting senile.

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