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Dion Phaneuf's numbers were quite solid this year. Part of the issue with him in Toronto is that he's never achieved his earlier offensive numbers from Calgary.
This is coupled with the fact that he's not always amicable when facing the media. He doesn't get the benefit of the doubt with many fans, and as the highly paid captain, many would argue that he needs to be better in this regard.
At first glance, his five-on-five Corsi For was disappointing at 40.8 percent. However, no defenseman faced tougher quality of competition in the NHL this year.
Also, he was paired with Carl Gunnarsson, who is stretched as a top-pairing NHL defender.
Phaneuf did manage 31 points, which tied him for second on the team among defenders. He also posted 144 penalty minutes and averaged 23 minutes, 33 seconds of ice time. He was easily the most physical Leafs blueliner.
The Leafs need to upgrade their defense over the offseason and take some of the pressure off their captain. Generating more offense from the back end is important, but making sure the ice tilts more in Toronto's favour is even more important. The Leafs have to get better in their own end.
With Morgan Rielly and Jake Gardiner only getting better with age and the hopes that the team will add an NHL-ready defenseman or two, expect Phaneuf's numbers to improve in 2014-15 with the help.
Prediction: Slight Improvement in 2014-15