Monster ready to help Leafs end losing ways

By Damien Cox

It seems like most, or all, of Jonas Gustavsson’s brief NHL career has been spent fighting back from injuries or ill health.

Indeed, there has been far more written about Gustavsson’s heart issues or his groin problem than about his actual accomplishments as a Maple Leaf.Still, there’s a great deal of hope that Gustavsson, expected to get his second NHL start Monday night against the Anaheim Ducks, can be the catalyst for a significant turnaround in what has been a disastrous start to the Leaf season.

“I haven’t felt any pain for a couple of days now, but I haven’t talked to the coach,” Gustavsson said after practice Sunday.

The 0-7-1 Leafs did send goalie James Reimer back to the Marlies Sunday, however, and head coach Ron Wilson confirmed that Gustavsson will, at the very least, back up Joey MacDonald, with Vesa Toskala still out with a sore knee.

But bet on Gustavsson starting. Even though MacDonald played his best game in Vancouver on Saturday, the Leafs still lost 3-1 and he is 0-3 in three starts.

So unless something goes wrong in practice Monday morning, it’ll be “The Monster” between the pipes. He allowed three goals in 37 minutes to Washington on the first weekend of the season mopping up for Toskala, then allowed only two goals to Ottawa. His save percentage of .894 in limited action is the best among the Leaf goalies.–monster-ready-to-help-leafs-end-losing-ways