Ladouceur, Maurice reunited

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:46 AM ET

Maple Leafs coach Paul Maurice is expected to add an old friend to his coaching staff.

Randy Ladouceur, who worked with Maurice with the Carolina Hurricanes, is being tabbed to become an assistant with the Leafs. Keith Acton, having survived when Pat Quinn and Rick Ley were fired in April, will remain on staff. A third assistant coach also will be hired. The staff should be announced any day.

It's possible both Dallas Eakins and Joe Paterson will remain with the AHL's Marlies. They were assistants under Maurice last season with the farm club.

Ladouceur most recently coached the Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League, but was fired in March.

Many OHL observers thought Ladouceur did a good job with what he was given in Oshawa and unfairly was let go.

TLUSTY ON HIS WAY

Forward Jiri Tlusty will play in North America next season, it's just a matter of where.

The Leafs' first-round pick in the draft last month will attend training camp, but it's likely he will wind up with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL. Tlusty, who signed an entry-level deal with Toronto last week, is eligible to play for the Marlies.

General manager John Ferguson likes the idea of Tlusty playing for coach Craig Hartsburg in the Soo. The well-regarded Hartsburg will coach Canada's junior team at the world championship this winter in Sweden.

"There is very little chance (Tlusty)will go back (to the Czech Republic)," Ferguson said. "Our intent is to bring him into camp and give him an opportunity to make the club like anyone else. (But) we have a lot of confidence in Craig's demonstrated ability to develop players. The decision (as to where Tlusty plays) will be made as we proceed through camp."

Tlusty was taken by the Soo in the 2005 CHL import draft.

BRIEFLY

Former Leafs goalie Ed Belfour worked out for the Florida Panthers yesterday, TSN reported on its website and, if all goes well, could sign with the Panthers for one year and $1.5 million US. The Panthers make their first visit to the Air Canada Centre on Oct. 9 ... The Leafs have re-signed forward Brad Leeb, who was fourth in Marlies scoring last season with 58 points (34 goals and 24 assists) in 79 games ... Negotiations continue with centre Matt Stajan.


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