Kaberle stays positive

TERRY KOSHAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:23 AM ET

In the midst of a season of change for the Maple Leafs, defenceman Tomas Kaberle has remained a steadying presence.

Of the Leafs' regulars on the blue line, only Kaberle and Pavel Kubina put in significant time a year ago. With Bryan McCabe gone, Kaberle has become the go-to workhorse and leads the club in ice time with an average of 24 minutes 54 seconds a game.

But is the 30-year-old satisfied with his overall performance through the first quarter?

"It's not bad," Kaberle said. "But I don't judge myself. I leave it up to you guys and the coaches."

Kaberle, with two goals and 12 assists in 19 games, is on pace for nine goals and 52 assists. Of course, he might score more often if he shot the puck every once in a while. Kaberle has heard the screams from fans at the Air Canada Centre to release the puck with authority but he won't listen. He's on track for 120 shots on goal this season, which is not a lot for a defenceman whose best qualities come from the offensive side of the game.

At any rate, Kaberle relatively is happy with the Leafs' performance as a whole.

"I like the way the team is playing," Kaberle said. "We are right there on the bubble for a playoff spot and I would like to see our team make it this year."


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