As the Leafs continue their unlikely drive for a playoff spot, team captain Dion Phaneuf scored 2 goals in a critical victory over Carolina, the team above them in the standings. These head to head matches are critical, and the Leafs have manned up and defeated both Carolina and Buffalo in less than a week. In the first few years of his career in Calgary Phaneuf appeared to have unlimited upside. Then his production substantially diminished and he was shipped off to Toronto. He had 60 PTS in his 3rd year, 47 PTS in his 4th year, and 32 PTS in his 5th year (last season). He reminds me a lot of a young Ed Jovanovski with better offensive production. Jovo didn't break 40 until his 7th season, and peaked at 51 PTS in his 12th season.
If you use the Jovanovski career arch, then Dion's best days should be ahead of him. Was his retraction just growing pains, or the result of the physical punishment he endures and dishes out every year? Can you build a franchise around this guy, and if so, why was Calgary so eager to let him go?