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Big Game for Gleason

by Paul Branecky / Carolina Hurricanes
We posted this on our Twitter account earlier today, but in case you hadn’t seen it…

Paul Branecky
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In an interview with our own Chuck Kaiton that will air in its entirety during Thursday night’s broadcast from Detroit, Toronto Maple Leafs and Team USA General Manager Brian Burke spoke highly of Tim Gleason’s chances at being named to the Olympic roster in the event that an incumbent suffers an injury prior to the games.

Tim Gleason is very much alive,” said Burke. “He’s played for us in the World Championships we all know him, we know what a solid guy he is, we know what a reliable defenseman he is and he’s very much alive.”

You can hear the Gleason-related excerpt of the interview here.

Of the seven defensemen who were chosen for Team USA, Paul Martin and Mike Komisarek are currently sidelined by injuries. Should another blueliner be needed before the games get going in mid-February, it appears Gleason has as good of a chance as any, and a much better chance than most in the media have given him credit for, of making the team as an alternate.

Burke noted that he will be watching Gleason closely tonight as his Maple Leafs take on the visiting Hurricanes and will submit a report to the rest of Team USA’s management after the game.

”On that last Sunday (February 14) that guys get on planes, that’s when we’re going to know who’s going,” he said. “Right up until then, we’re scouting.”

Needless to say, tonight is a big game for number six in white.

If Burke had his way and the team had chosen eight defensemen on the initial roster, Gleason may already be on the team. However, the rest of his staff insisted on taking the more conventional seven.

“I got out-voted,” said Burke.

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