‘Well, I don’t want Dion fighting a lot’ It was easy to tell how Brian Burke felt in the moment, when a television camera focused on the Toronto Maple Leafs general manager as he watched his captain drop his gloves to fight for the first time this season. It was easy to read Burke’s lips as Dion Phaneuf threw his punches: “Atta boy.”
The more complex questions were raised after the game, after the Leafs had fallen 3-2 to the Ottawa Senators at home on Tuesday night. Phaneuf was given an extra two minutes on the play for roughing, on top of the fighting major given for avenging the questionable hit Senators forward Nick Foligno had leveled on him earlier in the period. Was it wise for the captain to fight with the Leafs in tight? Was it wise for the team’s best defenceman to risk injury in a fight when Jay Rosehill was in the lineup that night?
“Well, I don’t want Dion fighting a lot,” Burke said on Wednesday. “I don’t like ‘clean hit’ fights. I think if it’s a clean hit, everyone should skate away. But I have no problem with him fighting with Foligno last night. Zero.” Photo: Fred Thornhill/Reuters
OMB! In an extremely Canadian combination of celebrities, Justin Bieber skated with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday while home for the holidays. Watch the video here. Photo: MuchMusic/George Pimentel for WireImage
Rogers, Bell close to MLSE deal Canada’s two largest telecommunications companies are close to buying a majority stake in Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd., including the National Hockey League’s Toronto Maple Leafs, in a joint bid estimated to be worth about $1.4-billion that could be announced as early as Friday.
A source with knowledge of events said that Rogers Communications Inc. and BCE Inc. have an agreement in principle that would split the majority 79.53% stake in MLSE currently owned by the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan.
Larry Tanenbaum, the Toronto-based construction magnate who owns the remaining 20.47% of MLSE, would remain chairman as a condition of his support for the transaction contemplated by Rogers and Bell. As part of a shareholders’ rights agreement, Mr. Tanenbaum has first right of refusal on any attempted sale, and would have to approve any changes to the partners’ accord, including dividing the much-coveted broadcast and Internet assets. (Photo: Brett Gundlock/National Post)
Hitting the spot From bullied to bully. After getting manhandled last week in back-to-back losses to the Boston Bruins, in which they were outscored 10-4, Jay Rosehill and the Toronto Maple Leafs travelled to Manhattan and got to kick a little sand in the face of the New York Rangers in a 4-2 win on Monday night. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Burke’s anniversary To mark Brian Burke’s third year as the general managerof the Toronto Maple Leafs, here’s how Toronto evolved from the roster he inherited to the team that skates tonight in Boston.
Goodbye Maple Leaf Gardens …Hello, Peter Gilgan Athletic Centre and Mattamy Home Ice. Yes, that is the new name of the revamped gym and hockey rink for Ryerson University in Toronto. Here’s how it looks. Photo: Peter J. Thompson/National Post
Maple Leafs must learn from Boston blowout After the Toronto Maple Leafs lost 7-0 to the Boston Bruins on Saturday, the easy thing to say was that the mirage has finally been revealed. That after roaring out of the gates on a Cinderella-type 9-3-1 run, the team that the rest of the country loves to hate had turned back into a pumpkin. That it was all a sham.
For those who had been skeptical of the Leafs’ early season success, that might be the thinking. The Bruins did not just beat Toronto on Saturday, according to Leafs forward Joffrey Lupul, “they kicked our ass every which way.”
So does this mean the curtain has been lifted to reveal the Leafs of past years? Should one bad night of hockey erase four weeks of good? (Photo: Abelimages/Getty Images)
Gustavsson watching his mouth and net Jonas Gustavsson, however temporarily, has assumed the role as starting goaltender of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Accordingly, he should probably be left to think about the art of stopping pucks. His cameo as a medical practitioner is preventing that. Photo: Mark Blinch/Reuters
Duck! Projectiles still fly as favoured means of protest Vespasian was a Roman Emperor, once upon a time, but before he landed the top job in the big Italian city he was just a political hack working in the hinterlands of the Empire’s African Province as the pay-taxes-or-be-crucified “proconsul.” Tacitus, the Roman historian, described Vespasian’s style of governance as “infamous and odious.” And perhaps it was, since his financial rigour and pennywise ways prompted locals to pelt him with turnips sometime around 63 AD.
Two thousand years later, food and other assorted objects are still being hurled in protest — the latest item being a hot dog aimed at Tiger Woods. The golfer was caught in the crosshairs of a fan who fired a wiener (and a bun) his way while he stood over a putt at a tournament in California on the weekend. “When I looked up, the hot dog was already in the air,” said Mr. Woods, who missed the putt. It was the latest, and possibly most evocative, of objects that have taken flight in recent years at other high profile personages in a variety of venues. Post columnist Joe O’Connor assesses some recent hits:
Gallery: Bill Barilko, his life and legend Bill Barilko disappeared that summer, he was on a fishing trip. The last goal he ever scored won the Leafs the cup. They didn’t win another until 1962, the year he was discovered. (Tim Fraser for National Post)
Former Maple Leafs enforcer Wade Belak was found dead on Wednesday. He had recently been named as a cast member for the third season of the CBC’s “Battle of the Blades,” and was preparing for a new job as a television analyst with the Predators. Tyler Anderson/National Post
On the occasion of our fifth anniversary, way back in 2003, the National Post put together a series of front pages, wondering what they would have looked if we’d been around in previous ages. They’d been long forgotten until a dusty poster turned up under a reporter’s desk and now revived here. (Pages by Rob Mckenzie and Kagan McLeod)