Eddy feels for Telly

LANCE HORNBY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:53 AM ET

Ed Belfour's tenure as a Leaf didn't end the way he wanted, but he knows things haven't turned out great for backup Mikael Tellqvist, either. Belfour had hoped a consequence of his buyout from the Leafs would be Tellqvist moving into the No. 1 role after four years as a Leafs substitute or minor leaguer. However, both men watched last night's Toronto - Florida match from the sidelines.

"Telly was a hard worker, a good teammate and he deserves better," Belfour said. Belfour doesn't always speak of his backups in such glowing terms. He and Marty Turco were at odds in Dallas as the latter's star rose, but Tellqvist and Trevor Kidd before him, posed no threat to Belfour's status as top dog.

In return, Belfour passed on some of the tips that make him the National Hockey League's active wins leaders with 457.

The gentlemanly Tellqvist doesn't pretend that life in the same corner with the dour Belfour was always harmonious, but agrees the two had a good relationship.

"You had to respect that his personality and his competitiveness have kept him in the league 17 years," Tellqvist said. "That's why he's going to the Hall of Fame."

MANITOBA EAGLE

Belfour's 17-year-old son Dayne is continuing his career in goal, this time with the Winkler Flyers of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League. He was playing for Streetsville in the Provincial Jr. A League during his father's time with the Leafs.

"My old coach is back there and that's nice to see," the elder Belfour said yesterday. "I think they play about 63 games in that league, which is a lot more than the 48 that I remembered."

The younger Belfour also is thinking of following in Dad's footsteps to the University of North Dakota.

PLAN B ON HOLD

It's the Andrew Raycroft show until further notice, despite Paul Maurice carrying three goaltenders. The coach said there was a danger in arbitrarily selecting a date when Jean-Sebastien Aubin or Mikael Tellqvist will get their first start.

"You can't tell a guy 'you won't be playing for two weeks, because who knows what will happen in between (with injuries)," the coach said. "You can't pick a game ... so I don't tell them. Raycroft will play until I tell him he's not."


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