Will Kaberle's scoring drought continue?

Maple Leafs defenceman Tomas Kaberle has been held pointless in seven games since the Olympics....

Maple Leafs defenceman Tomas Kaberle has been held pointless in seven games since the Olympics. (DAVE ABEL/QMI Agency)

MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 3:27 PM ET

When attempting to diagnose Tomas Kaberle’s recent scoring drought, there were no shortage of theories at the Air Canada Centre Saturday morning.

Perhaps it was post-Olympic fatigue.

Perhaps it’s the wear and tear of the condensed schedule over the final five weeks of the season.

Perhaps it was all the speculation about him at the trade deadline; specifically, “Will he stay or will he go?”

Funny thing is, it seems to be much ado about nothing.

Yes, heading into Saturday night’s Maple Leafs-Edmonton Oilers tilt at the ACC, it’s true Kaberle has failed to register a point in seven games, including the six outings since the Olympics ended.

But who cares?

Since the trade deadline came and went, the Leafs, with Kaberle still on the roster, have gone 3-1-1.

Shouldn’t the team results be the most important thing?

Of course.

Yet that didn’t stop Kaberle from being scrummed by the media after the morning skate Saturday, the focus being his offensive funk.

“Obviously coming back from the Olympics and all the flying time now with all these games, it’s a bit tiring,” said Kaberle, who represented the Czech Republic at the Vancouver Olympics. “But that’s no excuse. Sure, there are a lot of games in a short period now. But we all knew that going in. It’s only once every four years so it’s not too bad.

“Sometimes the puck goes in, sometimes it doesn’t.”

Much of Kaberle’s offensive funk can be attributed to a Leaf power play that has been flat, failing to score in its past 30 opportunities.

“(His struggles) are correlated with those of the power play,” coach Ron Wilson said, adding that “he needs to get pucks to the forwards quicker.”

Informed that GM Brian Burke, during a Friday radio interview, suggested the team would like to have Kaberle return next season, Wilson concurred.

“Hopefully he will be back,” Wilson said. “He has a role carrying the puck and on the power play. We have (other guys) who concentrate on the defensive aspect of the game on our blue line.”

Kaberle has one more season remaining on his contract. His no-trade clause becomes moot from the June draft through Aug. 15.

QUINN BACKS BUDS

Once he had finished all the handshakes, all the hellos, all the mini-reunions with friends and former colleagues, Pat Quinn had a chance to absorb the atmosphere of being back at the Air Canada Centre.

And, in the process, he told long-suffering Leaf fans that they one day will have a reason to cheer.

“One day they will hoist a Stanley Cup in this building,” Quinn said. “I truly believe that.”

Quinn, the bench boss of the Edmonton Oilers, will coach his first NHL game at the ACC Saturday night since being fired by the Leafs in 2006.

PROJETED LINEUPS

OILERS

Goal

Jeff Deslauriers

Defence

Tom Gilbert-Ryan Whitney

Taylor Chorney-Jason Strudwick

Aaron Johnson-Theo Peckham

Forwards

Dustin Penner-Andrew Cogliano-Gilbert Brule

Mike Comrie-Shawn Horcoff-Fernando Pisani

Robert Nilsson-Ryan Potulny-Zack Stortini

Marc Pouliot-Sam Gagner-Christopher Minard

MAPLE LEAFS

Goal

Jonas Gustavsson

Defence

Francois Beauchemin-Dion Phaneuf

Tomas Kaberle-Luke Schenn

Carl Gunnarsson-Luke Schenn

Forwards

Nikolai Kulemin-Tyler Bozak-Phil Kessel

Viktor Stalberg-Mikhail Grabovski-Luca Caputi

John Mitchell-Christian Hanson-Jamie Lundmark

Wayne Primeau-Rickard Wallin-Colton Orr


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