Burke treats Argo coaches

MIKE ZEISBERGER, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:55 PM ET

MONTREAL — It was Brian Burke’s way of wishing the Toronto Argonauts well.

According to Argos director of communications Beth Waldman, Burke contacted Jim Barker Friday night with an offer the Toronto coach just could not refuse.

“He called Jim and congratulated him on making the playoffs and getting to this point,” Waldman said.

But Burke wasn’t finished.

It seems the Maple Leafs general manager arranged for the entire Argos coaching staff and their families to dine at Gibby’s, an outstanding steakhouse in old Montreal, with Burke picking up the bill.

Whether it helps the Argos in their East division showdown against the Montreal Alouettes at the Big O Sunday afternoon remains to be seen.

Either way, it was a classy gesture by Burke.

The doctor's office

For the Leafs, it was an encouraging sight to see Dion Phaneuf riding the stationary bike outside the dressing room at the Bell Centre Saturday morning.

“The wounds have healed,” coach Ron Wilson said.

“It’s almost like he tore his MCL a little but. Because one of the cuts cut part of his MCL, it’s basically a knee injury.

“We’re waiting until the ligament is strong enough before he gets on the ice. But he’s rapidly improving, no doubt.”

Reunited ... sort of

Saturday’s Montreal Canadiens-Toronto Maple Leafs match-up at the Bell Centre featured a pair of former teammates with Team Canada from the 2009 World Juniors in Ottawa — Leafs defenceman Keith Aulie and Habs blueliner P.K. Subban.

“He’s a great guy,” Subban said of Aulie. “We had a great tournament together.

“Hopefully we get to bump a bit out there.”

Aulie was asked about Subban’s penchant for, ah, talking a lot. It is a habit that earned him criticism from Philadelphia Flyers captain Mike Richards last week.

“P.K.’s P.K.,” Aulie said. “He loves to have fun, he loves to talk. You always are going to have fun with him in the room.

“(The Richard’s stuff) doesn’t surprise me. A lot of people can walk in and look at him in a different way.

“He’s pretty animated.”

And how.

Food for thought

With their fathers accompanying them on the trip to Montreal, the Leafs had a very lively dinner Friday night.

“It was excellent,” Wilson said. “They spoke about their dads and told some funny stories. It was a lot of fun.

“We got to meet most of them. In a lot of cases the apple doesn’t fall far from the trees.”

Wilson was asked about Mike Brown’s dad, who is a biker and owns a Harley Davidson store.

“I had no trouble at all (recognizing him). Again, I had been forewarned about his beard and the Harley look.

“But he’s a great guy, fun to be around and a huge hockey fan.”


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