An uncomfortable rite of spring for the Leafs, an early April locker clean-out, takes place Monday at the Air Canada Centre.
Exit meetings with head coach Ron Wilson and general manager Brian Burke are expected, the players will get writers cramp from signing a roomful of charity items and then part ways for the summer.
It was upsetting the way we finished (three losses), winger Clarke MacArthur said. But on a positive note, the guys played really well the past couple of months. You have young guys coming in and were taking steps in the right direction.
Within a day or so, players will be accepting or declining invites to the world hockey championships in Slovakia. Mike Komisarek (USA), Nikolai Kulemin (Russia) and Mikhail Grabovski (Belarus) are in, with James Reimer pegged as one of three Team Canada goalies. Dion Phaneuf and Luke Schenn are under strong consideration when GM David Nonis finalizes his first set of picks, while keeping spots open for first-round playoff casualties.
Unrestricted free agents such as Fredrik Sjostrom may get a hint about their fate today, while Jean-Sebastien Giguere will be undergoing a sports hernia procedure in the coming weeks.