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Media meltdown, Antropov rehabbing, St. Pats preparations

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
by John McCauley
-- mapleleafs

TORONTO - It turns out the Toronto media isn't the toughest bunch around.

When the Mikael Renberg and Mats Sundin were eliminated from the Olympics by Belarus in the quarter-finals, the country's scribes were rather harsh.

One paper printed the team's headshots listing each player's salary with a headline that read "High Treason". That's seemed a little out of line to most, especially Renberg.

"It really surprised me what they wrote," Renberg said. "I have no problems with them saying we played a @$%& game but for them to talk about taking our passports away and stuff like is just dumb. I thought the Swedish media was better than that but I guess I was wrong."

Sundin wasn't quite as surprised at how Team Sweden was portrayed.

"I mean hockey in Sweden, and soccer as well, is big," Sundin said. "I know people in Sweden follow sports, especially the hockey and the soccer teams, and they get very involved and very emotional like it is in Canada, so I wasn't surprised."

One of the reasons why the Leafs captain isn't worried about the reaction back home is because he has to fend off ribbing from Tie Domi.

"There's a lot of heat going on, just trying to humble these guys and keep them loose, Belarus is going to be a word we use for long time around here," Domi said with a chuckle.

Antropov sighting

The Leafs' depth in St. John's took a huge blow just before the Olympic break when it was learned prospect Nik Antropov will be out six months with re-constructive surgery on his knee.

Nik Antropov's knee injury means six months out of action.
Graig Abel Photography
Antropov twisted his knee, tearing his anterior cruciate ligament, after a defenceman poke checked the puck away from him. The lanky 22-year-old is in Toronto to rehab the injury with his wife and 14-month-old baby.

The process won't be anything new to the youngster, he had the same procedure done on his opposite knee two years ago. This time the severity was a surprise to Antropov because the pain wasn't bad as the first incident.

"I felt bad pain in the first 10 seconds and then it was just sore in the dressing room," Antropov said. "It wasn't as sore as last time."

Antropov's name has been mentioned in trade rumours before, true or not, because of his size and stick handling ability.

Green's not his colour

To celebrate the Leafs 75th anniversary the team will wear its old Toronto St. Patricks jerseys on Saturday night against the Buffalo Sabres.

Brown pants and gloves will accompany the green and white jerseys and socks. The players have been breaking in the new equipment over the last few days.

Sundin, who had his brown pants on at Monday's practice, wasn't in favour of keeping the green and brown over the familiar blue and white.

"It's some tough colours to swallow but I think the fans are going to enjoy it. It's something totally different look and something from the past," Sundin said with a smile.
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