Kyle Wellwood is not one of the Maple Leafs who thinks the seven-game skid will be good for the club in the long run.
"I don't think it helps anything," Wellwood said. "Nobody likes to go through a losing streak and there is no fun involved. It's part of the game sometimes."
Thanks to a stronger start than expected, the Leafs still have as many wins in regulation, 13, as they do losses in regulation.
"To be at .500 after playing so bad lately is a bit of a godsend," Wellwood said. "We still have a lot of time to turn it around."
The Tampa Bay who?
The Leafs could be playing a team from Mars tomorrow night for all Pavel Kubina cares.
Although the big defenceman will skate against the Tampa Bay Lightning for the first time since breaking into the National Hockey League in 1997-98, his focus is on the recent slide.
"It's not about who we play right now, it is about just wanting to get a win," Kubina said.
The 29-year-old Czech left Tampa, where he won the Stanley Cup in 2004, to sign a four-year, $20-million US contract with the Leafs in July. Kubina, who would have been in the Toronto lineup on Nov. 1 in Tampa if not for a knee injury, remains close with Vincent Lecavalier and Filip Kuba.
Having worn a Lightning uniform for so many years, Kubina will have a few tips for his teammates. Though it's probably no different than what the Leafs will hear from their coaches.
"We have to make them play in their own zone, not ours," Kubina said. "I think their weak spot is defensive more than offensive."
If coach Paul Maurice decides to make a lineup change tomorrow night, defenceman Carlo Colaiacovo has declared that he is prepared to play.
"I don't like to watch, but you can learn a lot," Colaiacovo said. "When it is my time, I am going to be ready."
Colaiacovo has been practising with the Leafs for a week after recovering concussion-like symptoms and a broken finger. He has not played in the NHL in almost 11 months.