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Time For Monster To Get The Starts

by Adnan Virk / Toronto Maple Leafs

RELATED STORIES:  Monster More Then Stats

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It’s time to unleash the Monster for the vast duration of the season. Jonas Gustavsson is 0 for 8 in overtime this season and despite picking up the loss on Thursday night, gave a solid, 29 save performance. Including in that is a spectacular pad stop on Martin St. Louis that ensured the club would at least salvage a point.

He’ll be a free agent once the season is complete and Brian Burke and his brain trust need to see if Gustavsson is indeed the answer in goa.l After Andrew Raycroft, Justin Pogge and Vesa Toskala were unable to give this club the type of stability in goal that they enjoyed in years under Ed Belfour and Curtis Joseph. Even though the schedule is condensed due to the Olympic break and Gustavsson has battled various ailments this season, it’s time to put the pedal to the metal and let this guy play 80 percent of the games the rest of the way since Toskala, likely, will not be back next season.


Lord only knows if this is Chris Bosh’s swan song as a Toronto Raptor. It’s the question often asked by raptors fans as the summer of 2010 is looming. But make no mistake - if this is goodbye in his seventh season, CB4 has been nothing short of brilliant.

That performance against the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night in which he poured in a career-high 44 points on 15 of 26 from the field and 14 of 15 points at the free throw line, was incredible. He showed aggressiveness in driving to the hoop and rode the fine line between putting the ball on the floor or settling for 15 foot jump shots. Andrew Bogut was the primary defender on Chris and once he was out of the game after fouling out, one would have assumed the Raps victory was assured. But the team didn’t show enough of a dedication to feeding their meal ticket inside. But make no mistake - Bosh will be heading to his fifth All-Star game in his hometown, leading the league in double-doubles and doing everything possible to make this team a winner in Toronto through his leadership and the strength of his play.


- Yet another reason to love George Clooney is his unwavering commitment to helping those in need. Celebrities are often bashed for being narcissistic and self-motivated but there’s no denying the genuine emotion of the artists who are putting time and effort to helping the recovery in Haiti.

- Saw the Lovely Bones on Monday and it’s a comedown from the highs of Peter Jackson’s work in Heavenly Creatures and the Lord Of The Rings trilogy. The first half hour of the movie starts out promisingly but once Saiorse Ronan is murdered, Jackson falls in love with some ridiculous scenes featuring her in the ‘in-between’ prancing around CG nonsense and the movie really loses any sort of dramatic weight. Overall it’s an unusual mix between a grieving family coping with the loss of their daughter(an unconvincing Mark Wahlberg and solid Rachel Weisz), a serial killer thriller, and a teen drama aimed at the Twilight crowd with weightless thoughts on first kisses and the like. Roger Ebert called the film deplorable in his entertaining film review and the true bright spot is the wonderful Stanley Tucci, a surefire Oscar nominee for best supporting actor and a character actor who I’ve loved for years - especially a film he co-starred in and co-directed, the hilarious and tender Big Night. He also co-starred and directed the woefully underappreciated Joe Gould’s Secret a comedy starring Ian Holm in a performance that was far better than his more publicized turn in Atom Egoyan’s the sweet hereafter.

- Good for Conan. He walks away with a ton of loot and his staff get a nice severance. Not sure if he’ll resurface at FOX in the fall or go to cable but there’s no denying he got the short end of the stick.

- Just finished an excellent book, Chris Ballard’s the Art Of A Beautiful Game. Excellent profiles of LeBron, Dwight Howard, Steve Nash and the killer instinct of Kobe Bryant who used to play a high school teammate of his at Lower Merion and trounce him regularly since for Kobe there’s no other way. (And you wonder why he isn’t more popular-the best his ‘friend’ ever did was lose 100-12!)

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