PRAISE FOR PAT
EDMONTON -- Leafs coach Ron Wilson has a world of respect for Oilers counterpart Pat Quinn and expects tonight's contest will be a special one for the big Irishman in his first meeting with his former team.
"I don't think Pat would admit that it's going to be a little bit emotional, but I'm sure it is," Wilson said yesterday. "He spent (seven) very good years with the (Leafs). As much as the team is made fun of for lack of success, I thought Pat did an unbelievable job.
"I think Pat is one of the best coaches of all time and I wouldn't hesitate to say that. He really helped me a lot in my career -- got me started, essentially."
Quinn, who got the Leafs to the post-season in six of his seven seasons, tried to play down the contest.
"We're concentrating on our team here," Quinn said. "(The Leafs have) a tremendous history. They're loved throughout this country, there's no question about it. But my thoughts are right here."
BACK IN ACTION
Leafs forwards John Mitchell (knee) and Viktor Stalberg (shoulder) have joined the team for the western trip suggesting their return to the lineup is nearing, though it is unlikely either will get in the lineup here or in Calgary.
Mitchell, who suffered a knee injury in late November, was the most serious of the two but says most of the pain is gone now and it's just a matter of working himself back into game shape.
The winger hopes to return for next week's game against Florida.