Joffrey Lupul broke, again.

The curious case of being the unluckiest lucky guy on earth to continue to play in the NHL after a serious back injury and infection almost ended his career strikes again. Can he go a full season without injury? That answer, apparently, is no.

The closest Lupul played to a full season was in 2008-09 with the Philadelphia Flyers when he scored 50 points. Every other season it's been a toss-up. Last year he broke his arm thanks to an errant Dion Phaneuf slap shot. He missed the remainder of last season with a knee injury. This time it was the flukiest of incidents that will hold Lupul out indefinitely.

On Halloween night, (Come on, really?) Lupul was mysteriously missing from warmups in Columbus and soon news got out the forward broke a bone in his hand at practice the day before. A broken hand. In practice. Lupul was quick to say he was a bit swollen but didn't think anything else was wrong.

It's a recurring theme with the Maple Leafs; at some point Lupul will be injured and so will a line of other players.

Daniel Winnik was one of the more exciting additions the Maple Leafs made over the summer. He eats up big minutes, is effective on all the teams he's played on and can really do no harm to the Maple Leafs as they are.

Very early in Thursday's game against the Colorado Avalanche, Winnik took a scary fall and landed on the side of his head leaving him laying on his stomach unconscious. There was no headshot, there wasn't even illegal contact. Winnik fell and landed in the worst way possible.

Out came the stretcher and the Avalanche team doctor. While the Pepsi Center remained silent, both benches also stared on as Winnik was tended to, still laying motionless on the ice. It's moments like these that are sobering for sports fans who are, most times, far from doctors and left completely in the dark as they watch a member of their team in distress.

Seeing someone, anyone, land on the side of their head onto a solid sheet of ice skating at a moderate speed is enough to make your stomach turn. The game doesn't matter, the score doesn't matter, only the health of the player who could be seriously injured is the concern. Playing again after that moment? It's hard to know how to continue.

Just as Jake Gardiner left the ice with a lower-body injury, the team announced Winnik was alert, moving around and would not require a trip to the hospital. To hear Winnik, moments after being stretchered off the ice without moving his limbs, was walking around the room - that was comforting especially after the day the organization was having.

Two weeks for the Maple Leafs brought about three injuries to the team, and if you're having a bad couple weeks, you might as well tack on a suspension.

We've become quite intolerant when it comes to performance enhancing drugs, as we should as fans of sports in general.

On Thursday evening Maple Leafs forward Carter Ashton was suspended 20 games after testing positive for a banned substance. Interesting, as this usually doesn't happen often in hockey. And by that I mean guys don't get caught or they aren't get punished.

This case was more peculiar than the usual "I'm having fertility issues" or "I didn't know." Ashton suffers from asthma attacks, and as many people know, when you're having an attack the only thing you're concentrated on is getting some relief. You just want to breathe.

Here's where Ashton went wrong: After using the inhaler given to him by another teammate while training in the summer, he kept it and did not get it approved by trainers or team doctors to make sure it was legit. Sure, since the inhaler worked Ashton didn't assume it contained a prohibited substance but taking medication from another guy is a sketchy practice at best.

In the process of having an asthma attack, grabbing the nearest inhaler is a desperate plea to be able to breathe again. We would all do the same. The smart move would have been to take the inhaler to the Maple Leafs medical team, get it checked out and self-report the one-time use along with a detailed explanation to the NHL.

We don't always think along the same lines, and a 20-game suspension is a just end to a two-time violation of the NHL's substance abuse policy.