Leafs seeking pound of flesh

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:58 AM ET

Mats Sundin could only watch, wish and, who knows, maybe even weep a bit.

On that fateful night of Oct. 29, the Maple Leafs suffered their worst defeat at the Air Canada Centre, embarrassed 8-0 by the Ottawa Senators.

As his teammates were being thumped, Sundin ached to be out on the ice with them. But that was not to be, thanks to a left orbital bone that was damaged in the Leafs' season opener against those same Sens.

Now that he is back in the lineup again, Sundin, like his teammates, is seeking retribution against the Sens. The two teams meet for the first time since that Hogtown Humiliation on Saturday at the Corel Centre.

"Oh, I remember it," Sundin said. "It was really difficult to take in what was going on out there. You know how the guys feel out on the ice, and it's really frustrating.

"It's hard.Whether you win or lose, you want to be out there with the guys."

The Sens are a perfect 3-0 in The Battle of Ontario this season, a record that includes a pair of shootout victories.

"We have to keep improving," Sundin said. "It's going to be a big test for us on Saturday. We have to go into their building and go up against a team that is probably the best in the Eastern Conference, if not the entire league.

A GOOD CHALLENGE

"It's a good challenge. We've risen up to the challenge against them in the past and we're going to have to do it again."

All eyes will be on Eric Lindros and Ed Belfour in the coming days.

The Big E is expected to test out a brace for his right wrist, which suffered minor ligament damage against the Dallas Stars on Saturday.

Belfour was scratched prior to the game against the Anaheim Mighty Ducks on Monday with a slight groin injury.

If he wanted to spread some Christmas gloom throughout the dressing room, coach Pat Quinn could opt to show his players the horror flick that is the game film from their previous encounter with the Sens, one highlighted by Dany Heatley's four-goal performance.

"I don't know about that yet, but we're certainly going to be talking about that (eight-goal loss)," Quinn said

"A lot of people forget two years ago in the final game of the season we beat them (6-0). That sort of thing is always remembered.

"We'll remember (8-0) enough to know something we're already aware of -- that they are a heck of a hockey team and we're going to have to play well to not have it happen again. That happened to be one of those nights where everything they put on our net went in. We hope it doesn't happen again, and we're going to prepare not to let it happen again."


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