From Beauchemin to Stalberg, we're taking a look at and grading (please read the criteria below) the 2009-10 season for every player who laced 'em up for the Maple Leafs for a significant number of games during the campaign, with an eye towards 2010-11. That means only guys that are still property of the Maple Leafs. We're doing this in concert with Maple Leafs Hot Stove. Next up, Dion Phaneuf.
#3 / Defenseman / Toronto Maple Leafs
Apr 10, 1985
Years in the NHL:
Became a Leaf: January 31, 2010 as part of a Cliff Fletcher Flashback.
Contract Status: Entering year 3 of 6 year $39M contract; $6.5M cap hit.
|2009 - Dion Phaneuf||26||2||8||10||-2||34||0||0||1||0||87||2.3|
Today's Maple Leaf Hot Stove's turn. Nikhil Daljeet will be taking the reins.
The arrival of Dion Phaneuf in Toronto this year will undoubtedly be remembered as a significant moment in the annals of Maple Leafs history, for better or for worse. The trade that Brian Burke engineered for the newest Leafs captain has been generally heralded as a wise maneuver for his Toronto club. However, this transaction occurred after a full 2008-2009 season that saw a noticeable decrease in offensive output from Phaneuf (Flames management insisted it was due to injury). Moreover, the 2009-2010 season gave way to a floundering Calgary team that was in severe need of a major shakeup and Flames GM Sutter did exactly that on January 31st.
Dion’s effect on a young Maple Leafs squad was immediately apparent. Team cohesion and work ethic skyrocketed and this translated to a noticeably higher level of on-ice success. While his numbers were still not where they could be for a player of his caliber, he was strong at both ends of the ice. If Captain Phaneuf could step outside of the slightly-superficial stream of polite and proper vernacular that is expected of a NHL leader, he would likely take up that popular Mark Twain saying: "The reports of my death (figurative, of course) have been greatly exaggerated."
Read the Full Profile at Maple Leafs Hot Stove and come over the jump for more.
Rate Phaneuf below on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential and your expectations for the season - if he had the best year you could have imagined him having, give him a 10; if he more or less played as you expected he would, give him a 5 or a 6; if he had the worst year you could have imagined him having, give him a 1.
Have the Leafs made the right choice with their new captain? What kind of season do you anticipate for Phaneuf next year? How will his numbers look?