While many will argue the “protector” role is overrated and antiquated in today’s NHL, Leafs head coach Randy Carlyle is a big believer in players like Colton Orr.
Per the Globe and Mail’s James Mirtle, it seems Carlyle has developed quite an affinity for Orr. The intimidating 30-year-old forward with 959 career PIM has appeared in all 15 Leafs games, and he played a season-high 12:51 Saturday against Ottawa while skating on a third line with skill players Nazem Kadri and Clarke MacArthur.
“I thought he gave us what we needed,” Carlyle said when asked about Orr’s bump in ice time. “And it’s amazing how things quiet down when he’s out there.”
Of course, the argument against Orr’s deployment remains the same. As Mirtle notes, the Leafs have been “badly out shot” when Orr is on the ice.
Kadri doesn’t seem to mind though.
“Definitely [Orr’s] presence is felt out there,” he said. “Guys know when he’s on the ice. I don’t know if you want to go in the same corner with that guy.”