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Don Cherry criticizes Maple Leafs over treatment of Kadri, signing of Kulemin

Toronto Maple Leafs centre Nazem Kadri is congratulated by teammates in Toronto on January 19, 2012. Don Cherry can't believe how the Toronto Maple Leafs are treating prospect Nazem Kadri. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

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Toronto Maple Leafs centre Nazem Kadri is congratulated by teammates in Toronto on January 19, 2012. Don Cherry can't believe how the Toronto Maple Leafs are treating prospect Nazem Kadri. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Don Cherry can't believe how the Toronto Maple Leafs are treating prospect Nazem Kadri.

The Hockey Night in Canada commentator took to Twitter on Tuesday to criticize how the Leafs have treated the 21-year-old centre.

"I have never in my life seen a kid treated like Nazem Kadri by the Leafs," said Cherry on his verified account. "It started in his first training camp where he led the team in scoring but was blasted for his defensive faults.

"They don't blast (Nikolai) Kulemin who scored 7 goals. They give him 5 million dollars."

Kadri had five goals and two assists in 21 NHL games last season. He had 18 goals and 22 assists with the American Hockey League's Toronto Marlies last season.

Kulemin had seven goals and 21 assists with the Maple Leafs last season, and signed a two-year deal worth US$5.6 million on July 20.

Cherry went on to criticize Marlies coach Dallas Eakins, who publicly questioned Kadri's fitness levels as training camp for the AHL club began on Sept. 28.

"Now Marlie coach comes out and rips Kadri in the newspaper saying he doesn't eat properly," said Cherry. "Imagine headlines saying he's chubby and fatso.

"If anyone wants to get a blue print on how to destroy someone, just follow the Toronto Maple Leafs."

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