Gunnarsson stands by Leaf teammate

Maple Leafs defenceman Carl Gunnarsson

Maple Leafs defenceman Carl Gunnarsson

Lance Hornby, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:58 PM ET

TORONTO - Winger Clarke MacArthur was understandably reluctant to wander through the dressing room after accidentally draining a

150-foot pass into his own empty net.

But defenceman Carl Gunnarsson, who had the puck get past him and cap Ottawa’s 5-2 win on Saturday, was sticking by his teammate.

“It’s just bad timing,” Gunnarsson said. “I’m moving in on the blue line and I think right then he just put his head down and passed it. Just bad luck that they had an open net.

“It was skidding fast, I tried to get it, but what are you going to do? It wasn’t a game-changing goal, but it wasn’t funny either. I hope Clark doesn’t take the full blame. I was part of it.”

Milan Michalek was given credit for the unassisted goal.

Howe’s that for hockey

The Windsor Star recently sat down with Hall of Famers Gordie Howe and his son Mark Howe to get some tales of growing up around Detroit.

Gordie recalled building a backyard rink for sons Mark and Marty, adding some boards with wood he nicked from a nearby construction site and decorating it with Christmas lights. But the boards weren’t high enough when Mark fired a puck through the family’s picture window. Gordie traced the puck’s path through the broken glass and two rooms before finding it under a couch.

Mark spoke of his horrific 1980 injury when he was impaled on the old-style sharp mooring of the post, which just missed his rectum and sliced through the other side of his thigh. The incident led to the NHL, and the rest of hockey, going to magnetic pegs.

Amazingly, despite the career-threatening injury, Mark was back with the Flyers in six weeks.

“I’d have come back in four,” Gordie deadpanned.

Now hear this

General manager Brian Burke says he wants coach Ron Wilson to be the voice of the Leafs rather than himself, but Wilson said he prefers the players to keep each other accountable.

“You want the loudest voice in the room to be the collective voice of the players, not my own. If someone isn’t living up to the standard of the team, he hears it from a teammate.”

Loose Leafs

Burke donated a horse in honour of his late son Brendan Burke to Toronto’s Mounted Police Unit on Sunday at the Royal Winter Fair. ‘Moose’, in homage to Brendan’s nickname, was presented at the Unit’s 125th anniversary celebration ... Saturday’s loss to Ottawa marked the fourth time this season the Leafs have followed up a two-power-play-goal game with none. All 11 of Toronto’s power-play goals have been squeezed into six games. ... Centre Joe Colborne has been sidelined the past few games for the Marlies with a lower-body injury.


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