February 9, 2010
By LANCE HORNBY, QMI Agency
The Leafs and senior management of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd. will fly on a chartered plane to Canton, Mass, in greater Boston on Tuesday morning for the funeral of Brendan Burke, son of team general manager Brian, who was killed in a car crash Friday on a snow covered highway in Indiana.
The flight is scheduled to leave at 7 a.m. and there will be 60 people flying to Canton.
The Leafs were to have Tuesday free anyway, with just one game remaining before the Olympic break, Friday in St. Louis.
Rickard Wallin of the Leafs is often confused with unrelated countryman Niclas Wallin, but there was much more chance of a mix-up Monday night.
Niclas had just joined the San Jose Sharks in a trade with Carolina, though Sharks' coach Todd McLellan was much more familiar with Rickard, whom he coached with the Houston Aeros of the AHL when the latter was property of the Minnesota Wild before the lockout.
"The coach said: 'Don't worry if I call you Rickard tonight,' " Niclas said at the morning skate.
At 6-foot-3 and five years older than Rickard, the bigger Niclas is easy to distinguish.
"He has a better beard than me," added Rickard. "It's a fairly common Swedish name, but I'm from Stockholm and he's from way up north. He's an outdoorsman."
Niclas confirms he was raised just 60 miles outside the Arctic Circle "but (Leafs great) Borje Salming is about four hours further north of me."
Winger Colton Orr's 129 penalty minutes are the most by a Leaf since the lockout.