Monday, October 24, 2005

LEAF SQUAD ELATED TO SEE JERSEY #88 IN TORONTO

Another prospective for a MVP honor, we'll unexpected always happen. Eric Lindros eventually has fulfilled what many consider his destiny. He has become a Maple Leaf. And against the conditions of modest expectations, including a modest salary, he has quickly become a dominant player and a team leader. Can anyone imagine what might have happened if Eric Lindros had landed in Toronto back in March 2001. Would the team have carried home the team's first Stanley Cup since 1967? He's a great team guy and a well-liked persona in the dressing room. And all those people that have criticized him and tried to dowel him, this is their perception and their problem. His acquisition late in the offseason, created only a minor undulation in Leaf Nation. On the contrary the dominant feeling that the nation had that he was an acceptable risk at $1.55 million for a single season. In March 2001, Philadelphia GM Bob Clarke agreed to send Lindros, who was then one of the highest-paid players in the league, to Toronto for Nik Antropov, Danny Markov and a draft pick or two. The prospect sent Leaf Nation into rage. By the time Lindros arrived in Toronto this summer No. 88 jerseys has magically appeared in stores. Lindros recent contribution for the Leafs’ was a crucial goal in the Leafs' 4-2 victory over the Flyers on which Ken Hitchcock -- his former coach commented that Lindros had become such a dominant force so early in the season. He has seven points in six games and leads all Toronto forwards with 20:12 of ice time per game. For a player who seems to have been at odds with the hockey gods much of his career, perhaps failing to fulfill the expectations so many had for him, was involved in a sour, personal quarrels with Flyers management that cost him a year of playing time. Now it seems that he has found just the right karma in Toronto now.

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