The rumors were quickly shot down the next day however by Darren Dreger.
Another Phaneuf rumor was put to bed during the week, with President Brendan Shanahan stating that Phaneuf would almost certainly continue to serve as the Leafs’ captain.
“I don’t know if (stripping the captaincy) is a solution. I think it’s a cop-out, to a certain degree an easy way out,” Shanahan said. “Ultimately this will be a group decision. But I can tell you it’s not something I’ve contemplated. Just the opposite. I want to help enhance the player and leader that Dion is.”
In other news, Leo Komarov is set to make his return to the NHL. Komarov played one season with the Leafs during the lockout-shortened 2012-13 campaign, quickly earning fan-favourite status with his ability to agitate opponents. The Finnish Olympian joined Moscow Dynamo in 2013-14 where he would serve as alternate captain and tie for the team lead in scoring en route to a Continental Cup (KHL equivalent of the Presidents’ Trophy). The Leafs still own Komarov’s rights until July 1, after then he hits the open market and can sign for anyone. Komarov has stated that he would like to return to Toronto, once saying that his time as a Leaf was “probably the best time of (his) life”.
Recently fired assistant coach Scott Gordon commented on the Leafs’ season in an interview with James Mirtle. Gordon commented that complacency in the dressing room was one of the reasons for the Leafs’ sub-par play. “Whether we won or lost, we felt there was a concern there. ” (regarding the Leafs’ play) “As coaches, we tried to address it and get the players to understand what we saw, but at the end of the day, they’ve got to go out and play.” Gordon also spoke on the relationship between Jake Gardiner and Randy Carlyle, saying that the rumored tension between them is a misconception and “comical”.
Leafs’ 2012 draft pick Matt Finn was announced as the winner of the OHL’s Mickey Renaud Captain’s Trophy. The award is given to the OHL team captain who best exemplifies leadership on and off the ice. Finn led his Guelph Storm to their third OHL Championship in team history this season. Fellow Leaf pick Antoine Bibeau also received an award this week, capturing the Guy Lafleur Trophy as MVP of the QMJHL playoffs. The netminder posted a 16-4-4 record with the Val d’Or Foreurs en route to a President Cup title. Bibeau recently posted a 51-save shutout against the London Knights in their Memorial Cup showdown.
The Toronto Marlies completed their second consecutive playoff series sweep with a 4-0 win against the Chicago Wolves on Friday night. Goalkeeper Drew MacIntyre has led the way for the Marlies, posting a .949 save percentage and two shutouts in the postseason. Jerry D’Amigo has led the offense, putting up four goals and eight assists in seven games. The Western Conference Final series will see the Baby Leafs go up against either the Texas Stars or the Grand Rapids Griffins.