Being put on waivers 'shocks' Boyce

TERRY KOSHAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:55 PM ET

TORONTO - Darryl Boyce figured that Philippe Dupuis might have beaten him out of a job because of the latter’s penalty-killing abilities.

“If they went that way, then I totally understand,” Boyce said on Monday, just hours after he was among the Maple Leafs’ cuts.

“The only thing I can really see is that they did not see me as a penalty killer. I feel I can be one.”

Boyce’s hunch was right.

“Right now, Philippe is much more experienced than Boycer would be in killing penalties,” coach Ron Wilson said. “Maybe that’s something he can focus on with the Marlies in the next couple of weeks.

“Darryl did not have a bad camp. He’s going to be back, I’m sure, before long.”

If Boyce is not picked up by another NHL club by noon on Tuesday, he will go to the Marlies and try to work his way back onto the Leafs roster.

“If you get claimed, it means there is interest in you, so that would be good,” Boyce, 27, said. “That’s not to say I don’t want to be here. My goal is to play for the Maple Leafs.”

Boyce was one of five cuts made by the Leafs on Monday.

Defenceman Keith Aulie and centre Mike Zigomanis were sent to the Marlies, while defenceman Matt Lashoff and forward Joey Crabb also were placed on waivers. Lashoff and Crabb will be headed for the Marlies if they clear.

Naturally, Boyce wasn’t pleased that he won’t be starting the season with the Leafs. He’ll make $105,000 US with the Marlies, where his Leafs salary would have been $700,000. But his displeasure had little to do with the salary difference.

Last season, Boyce was recalled from the Marlies late in December and did not go back. He played in 46 games for Toronto and had five goals and eight assists, and his plus-8 was second on the team in plus-minus.

Despite a solid training camp, Boyce was told in a meeting on Monday morning with Wilson, vice-president of hockey operations Dave Poulin and assistant general manager Claude Loiselle that he was not going to make the team.

“I’m not happy with the decision,” Boyce said. “It’s still a shock. It’s tough.

“I tried to be more physical. There are limited things you can do in that fourth-line role, and you have to do them well. I’m going to take a positive out of it in any sort of way.”


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