Expected returns

STEVE BUFFERY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:01 AM ET

Maple Leafs winger Niklas Hagman will likely play on Saturday against the Edmonton Oilers.

Hagman, who has 19 goals and 18 assists, was knocked out of the game last Thursday in Long Island when he was elbowed in the head by New York defenceman Brendan Witt, who subsequently received a five-game suspension from the NHL. Hagman had already suffered a concussion earlier this season.

The Leafs are expecting defenceman Jeff Finger back in the lineup tonight against the visiting New Jersey Devils. Finger suffered a right arm injury on Jan. 27.

"I'm feeling a lot better, it's still a little painful, but we'll see," Finger said yesterday. "I'd like to play, it's just the matter of them giving me the OK."

The Leafs will likely sit Jonas Frogen tonight if Finger returns.

MARTY THE GREAT

Leafs coach Ron Wilson tips his hat towards New Jersey's Martin Brodeur and the fact that the Devils' goaltender picked up his 100th regular-season shutout on Sunday, defeating the Philadelphia Flyers 3-0. But he's particularly happy that Brodeur reached it before the Devils landed in Toronto for tonight's game at the Air Canada Centre and the fact that his team doesn't have to go through the myriad of questions from the media about the prospect of Brodeur reaching the milestone. Wilson also suggested that Brodeur's feat was the product of both his great goaltending and the fact that he played on great defensive teams.

"This isn't a knock on Marty Brodeur, but whenever you play the Devils, your hands are full because they play so well defensively," Wilson said. "And then when you do get an opportunity (to score) and you look up and there's Marty Brodeur. The last time we played Marty we shot 48 pucks at him and I'm hoping we get a least 30 cracks at him (tonight) and we'll see what happens."

OFF THE CHRISTMAS CARD LIST

Wilson is not a big fan of the hype surrounding the NHL trade deadline -- at least while he's in Toronto. The Canadian sports networks, which are headquartered in Toronto -- devote almost the entire day to trades, possible trades and rumours of trades.

"It's like the world junior tournament. It's TSN's thing and TSN has made a huge deal out of the trade deadline day and it's taken on basically a life of its own everywhere," Wilson said.


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