The Maple Leafs were an energetic bunch during practice at Lakeshore Lions Arena yesterday. At least, at lot more energetic than they have been recently.
Head coach Ron Wilson gave the players the day off Tuesday after the club returned from a three-games-in-four-days Western Conference trip Friday.
Centre Dominic Moore said the players needed the rest, but also the chance to do some "normal" things around the house.
"Personally, I like to get a little bit of a sweat going somehow (on a day off), and a lot of guys have errands and stuff, paying the bills, and whatever else they're up to," Moore said. "Game days are pretty much a write off as far as accomplishing anything on the to-do list. So days off, usually you cram them all in."
Wilson plans to give the players Saturday off following tomorrow night's game in Buffalo because they will have two days to practise before the next game on Tuesday.
GIVE IT A REST
Wilson said he is not a big fan of one recent development in the NHL -- the tendency of players from one team going after a guy who delivered a big, but clean, hit. In recent games, opposition players went after a pair of Leafs, Jeff Finger and Ryan Hollweg, after they delivered big hits, which were perfectly legal.
"That's kind of our society, isn't it? Road rage, right? Do you ever scream at someone who cuts you off? All the time. Why is that?
It's instant gratification. That's kind of a mark on our society for sure," Wilson said.
AROUND THE NET
Wilson said that Marlies goaltender Justin Pogge will likely get some action with the Leafs before long ... At practice yesterday, the Leafs worked on "simple stuff" as Wilson put it, puck movement in the neutral zone and defensive zone coverage ... Defenceman Mike Van Ryn, who suffered numerous injuries after being slammed from behind by Montreal's Tom Kostopoulos on Nov. 8 said he never talked to the Canadien following the illegal hit, but the two did exchange text messages.
"What's done is done," Van Ryn said.