Leafs complete half the job

GARY LOEWEN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:15 AM ET

The Maple Leafs are now halfway to a playoff spot with 44 points.

Problem is, they are almost two-thirds of the way through their schedule.

Eighty-eight points might be just enough to claim the eighth playoff position in the NHL Eastern Conference.

So, with 30 games to go, the Leafs must go 20-6-4 or thereabouts.

Even for a never-say-die fan, that might seem inconceivable.

Kessel conundrum

While some Leafs fans bemoan the trade which sent two first-round draft picks and a second-rounder to Boston for Phil Kessel, a Bruins supporter called in to complain about the wisdom of the deal from the other end.

“What good are those draft picks when the Bruins need scoring now,” he said, figuring that Boston could be an Eastern Conference contender with Kessel in its lineup.

The Bruins are averaging 2.43 goals a game, worst in the NHL.

Would Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli reverse that trade now and return the three picks to the Leafs for Kessel?

That, too, is inconceivable.

Road rage

NASCAR is encouraging drivers to show more aggression and emotion this season.

Who is running that outfit, Brian Burke?

Fight goes on

Despite the news of Shawn O’Sullivan’s scrape with the law in Belleville this week, Sun reader Terry Enright isn’t throwing in the towel on the former boxing champion.

“For the past three years I have put his name forward to the Canadian Walk Of Fame campaign, to no avail,” Enright says in an e-mail.

“Personally, I feel that while quite often Shawn is the author of his own misfortune, he has not been given the recognition he is due.”

A former world amateur champion, national hero and Canadian athlete of the year, O’Sullivan, 47, was charged with assault and mischief following an incident in which he says he was trying to track down some rings that had been stolen from him.

Paris pumped

A convicted steroid dealer chuckles at the notion that former slugger Mark McGwire used drugs only to maintain his health.

“Let me put it to you this way,” Curtis Wenzlaff — who says he used to supply McGwire — told ESPN.

“If Paris Hilton was to take that array (of drugs), she could run over Dick Butkus.”

Hmm, if Paris Hilton were to delve into steroids, what part of her performance, exactly, would she be trying to enhance?

Say what?

“I wouldn’t say that, but if you said that, I wouldn’t disagree with you.”

— Lions GM Martin Mayhew to the Detroit News when asked if the Lions secondary needs a lot of help this off-season.

gary.loewen@sunmedia.ca


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