Mats moving on up

Leafs in 2nd  period action against the Flyers. Mats Sundion struggles to get a goal.  Sun Photo

Leafs in 2nd period action against the Flyers. Mats Sundion struggles to get a goal. Sun Photo

STEVE SIMMONS

, Last Updated: 12:40 PM ET

Leafs captain Mats Sundin continues to make his way up the all-time NHL goal scoring list. Sundin, with 539 goals after last night's tally, is one behind Teemu Selanne for 26th in all-time scoring. Then comes some heady territory: Sundin is two goals behind Chicago great Stan Mikita and five goals away from tying Maurice (Rocket) Richard, who sits 24th with 544 goals.

FLU BUG

Darcy Tucker was all bundled up in a jacket in rather warm Atlanta yesterday, his face all flushed as he was suffering from the flu. Under the weather, he still managed to play last night.

FUTURE HOPE

Leafs management must be hoping that Thrashers rookie defenceman Tobias Enstrom paves the way for Anton Stralman to make his move into the Toronto lineup. Enstrom, two years older than Stralman and of similar size (Enstrom is the lighest defenceman in the NHL) has been a terrific addition to the Atlanta lineup.

He was NHL rookie of the month for November. The two are also of a similar skill set.

SIZE MATTERS

Coach Paul Maurice is entralled with the possibilities of the Leafs fourth line of Chad Kilger, Mark Bell and Wade Belak, even if he traditionally gives little ice time to the fourth liners.

"You have two players with great speed, two players who can fight, two players who can really shoot the puck. All three of them have great size."

One more thing, you have two players in Belak and Bell who have combined for two goals this season.

IN GILL THEY TRUST

Maurice said something yesterday no Leaf fan has probably heard before: "Hal Gill has probably been our best defenceman this year," said the coach. He also called the rather enormous Gill the most improved Leaf.

Gill, never known for his offence, has 14 points on the Leaf defence, two more than Bryan McCabe. Gill has never scored more than 22 points in any NHL season.


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