Colaiacovo worth the wait

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 10:21 AM ET

Carlo Colaiacovo laughed when it was pointed out that the Maple Leafs are a perfect 3-0 since he returned to the lineup.

"I guess we've just got to keep it going," said the young defenceman, whose goal Saturday was his first at the NHL level since Jan. 14 against the Phoenix Coyotes.

Over the summer, the Leafs brass tentatively had pencilled in Colaiacovo to be partnered with the team's marquee off-season free agent acquisition, Pavel Kubina.

Those plans were scuttled, however, when Colaiacovo became dizzy during his first on-ice workout of training camp and missed a number of weeks.

When he finally did return, he broke a bone in his hand during a rehab stint with the AHL Marlies and he once again was sidelined.

Now he finally is back with the Leafs and has the opportunity to line up with Kubina, a partnership the team envisioned months ago.

"I like the way they play off each other," coach Paul Maurice said.

Colaiacovo said the duo still is enduring some growing pains.

"(But) we're getting more comfortable with each passing game," he said.

"It was always my goal to be back with the Leafs. I was confident it would happen. Now I must make the most of it."

TUCKS AND PUCKS

Leafs forward Darcy Tucker will be partnering with POGO (Pediatric Oncology Group of Ontario) to host a skate party and luncheon today for 36 families whose lives have been touched by childhood cancer.

The event begins when the families get the opportunity to watch the Leafs morning practice at the Air Canada Centre.

After lunch at the Hot Stove Lounge, the families will join the Tuckers on the ice for a skate. At the conclusion, each child will receive a special gift and a certificate for their families.

POGO, which is comprised of five specialty oncology hospitals, raises funds to help offset the costs associated with the medical treatment of children with cancer.


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