TORONTO - It was a little like rubbing salt in the wound for the Maple Leafs. Down 5-2 with a little less than eight minutes remaining Saturday night, they had to watch as a Toronto jersey came flying onto the ice at Air Canada Centre.
One fan, unable to throw in the towel, opted to give up his jersey instead.
"When a fan does that, they're frustrated ? as are we," said Toronto captain Dion Phaneuf. "We do not like to put forth the effort we did (tonight) on any night, especially in front of our fans. We take responsibility for not giving them what they want. They wants to see wins, as do we.
"We want to win hockey games but tonight we didn't display enough and do enough little things to win a game. We got beat all over the ice."
Toronto also lost its home opener, 4-3 to Montreal on Wednesday.
The Penguins did not miss the fan's statement Saturday.
"That's always really bad when you see that," said winger Pascal Dupuis. "You don't want any jerseys on the ice, any team. That's no class, no respect, obviously."
Sidney Crosby, remembering the days when the Penguins were at the other end of the standings, said he felt for the Leafs after the show of fan disaffection.
"It doesn't help, but obviously the fans are going to make their opinions known or show what they think, but it definitely doesn't help things and I'm sure with it being so early, it's not fun to see that in your home rink." he said. "I think you kind of feel for guys.
"As a player playing in your home rink, I don't think you ever want to see that, but again fans are here and they have high expectations."