The Leafs are in Chicago, and I'm heading to Norfolk to scout the ECHL Admirals on behalf of the Solar Bears. Okay, I'm not actually traveling for hockey, but it makes a nice story, doesn't it? Speaking of the Solar Bears, one of ours helped the Marlies win in St. John's on Valentine's day -- proud to report that Brett Findlay scored twice to defeat the John Scotts 2-1. You can read the full recap by my pal Mark UK Leafs over here at the Hot Stove.

Notable in his recap was a glimpse of new prospect Tobias Lindberg in action. Mark's assessment: meh.

Tobias Lindberg did not have a spectacular debut on a line with Nylander and Kapanen. Hard to be critical in the circumstances, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see a line change or two.The other thing I did last night was represent our fine website on a podcast.

I joined the SBN Winnipeg Jets site Arctic Ice Hockey on their weekly podcast, and managed to answer exactly no questions about Phaneuf, Stamkos, or who goes next. Please notice, I answered questions with questions. I hope I represented the fine people of PPP well!

AIH Podcast: My segment falls at the 20 minute mark, when I call these boys masochists.

Leafs News

Leafs' Cheap UFA Gambit Already Paying Off | PPP
The Leafs' cheap, short-term UFA deals are already paying dividends.

Marner and Nylander: Does the First NHL Season Really Matter? | PPP
"I decided to take a look at forwards drafted in the top 10 between 2007 and 2011 to see how their development may have been affected by the year in which they entered the league and played a significant portion of the season."

Leafs could target Tavares down the line | TSN
Unfaithful to Stamkos already?!

Leafs' Leipsic in the conversation this year and beyond | Sun
"He’s a greasy little guy, with really good skill," Babcock said. "There’s a tenacity about him."

Report: Maple Leafs set to host Red Wings in Winter Classic rematch | Fansided
"We are still expecting Toronto on January 1st with the Detroit Red Wings as the opponent. They had a tremendously successful outdoor game a couple of years ago in Ann Arbor."

Maple Leafs' Jared Cowen: Out for roughly 10 days | CBS Sports
Cowen (hip), who was traded from Ottawa to Toronto on Tuesday, is not likely to make his Maple Leafs debut for approximately 10 days, TSN's Mark Masters reports.

James van Riemsdyk Should Be Next To Go For Maple Leafs | TSS
"The problem with us with Dion is that Dion is ready to win, we’re not ready to win. So it was a hard decision. I think it’s a good decision for Dion – not today, but tomorrow. And it’s a good decision for our club moving ahead."

Coach’s Corner: Making Phaneuf captain of Maple Leafs was their ‘worst’ mistake | Coach's Corner
WORST mistake, Grapes? Huh.

Other Hockey News

A 43rd birthday card to the legendary Jaromir Jagr | Puck Daddy
"The mullet is gone. The insane circus scoring moves only come in minimal spurts. But he’s still effective, and he’s still a mesmerizing talent for different reasons than his younger self."

Lives shattered by concussions: former NHL players share their stories | CTV
"Mike Peluso says he is damaged goods. The 50-year-old former NHL enforcer, who played in the league from 1990 until 1998 with five NHL teams including the Chicago Blackhawks, Ottawa Senators and New Jersey Devils, says he has suffered eight grand mal seizures and has brain damage after playing in the NHL."

Eric Lindros is healthy and happy after blazing a trail for player safety | THN
"Lindros lives in the knowledge that he was right all along and those in hockey who viewed him as a petulant, selfish and spoiled superstar owe him a big apology. The trail he blazed on players’ rights and concussion awareness that earned him so much derision during his career have become standard procedure for today’s player."

A look at the decline of fighting and extinction of the NHL enforcer | Sportsnet
"There just isn’t any room left in the league for a skater whose sole role is to intimidate opponents physically from the bench while he skates for maybe five or 10 minutes in the entire game, providing minimal value to the on-ice performance of his team."

Is the NHL ready for a European head coach? | EOTP
"With the same names surfacing whenever a question of a coaching change emerges, a unique perspective may be what a team really needs to turn their fortunes around."

Long-distance love: How Ben and Jenny Scrivens tend goal and their relationship | National Post
"Jenny played ball hockey and roller hockey until age 10, when she started playing goalie on a boys’ ice hockey team. That team was coached by female hockey pioneer Manon Rhéaume, the only woman to play in an NHL preseason game, as a goalie with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 1992. That Rhéaume-coached team played in the international Quebec City pee-wee tournament."