Wilson lights fire

STEVE BUFFERY

, Last Updated: 9:44 AM ET

Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson has alluded to a work ethic problem by some of his veteran players from the beginning of training camp -- a subtle knock at former Leafs coach Paul Maurice and Leafs management from recent seasons.

Some players, in particular Colaiacovo, Matt Stajan and Alex Ponikarovsky have struggled under Wilson's up-tempo forecheck system.

"It's breaking bad habits," said Wilson, when asked why some Leafs veterans have struggled adapting to his style. "If you played in the league for 10 years and just willy nilly played the game on your own program, it's awful hard to get into a system and understand the benefits of it."

Wilson has said that it will take until about Christmas time before the players finally get in the type of condition he demands.

COLAIACOVO RETURNS

As promised Wilson inserted defenceman Carlo Colaiacovo into the lineup after making the Toronto native a healthy scratch in Friday's 1-0 shootout loss in New York against the Rangers. To make room for Colaiacovo, Wilson sat veteran defenceman Mike Van Ryn for the first time in the regular season.

Also sitting for the fifth straight regular-season game was defenceman Ian White.

Wilson started substitute goaltender Curtis Joseph last night against the Penguins. It was Joseph's first start of the season and first for the Leafs since May 28, 2002, a 2-1 playoff loss to Carolina.

SCHENN DOING WELL

It becomes more unlikely with each passing game that the Maple Leafs are going to send rookie defenceman Luke Schenn back to junior.

Wilson is not only giving the former Kelowna Rockets star a regular shift, he often plays him more than most veterans on the blueline. In Toronto's 1-0 shootout loss to the Rangers on Friday, Schenn logged more ice time than any other Leaf, save for Tomas Kaberle.

The Saskatoon native played a total 25 minutes, 50 seconds against the Rangers.The 18-year-old led the Leafs in number of shifts in the game with 36, two more than Kaberle, Jonas Frogren and Pavel Kubina.


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