Toronto/Buffalo Culture of Losing

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 9) – Belated happy Thanksgiving, my fellow Canadians. How many of you watched that football turkey in San Francisco on Sunday? If you live in these parts, could you not instantly identify with the Buffalo Read More

Myriad of Friday Sporting Thoughts

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 5) – Given what I’ve been reading, I believe there’s a lot of wishful thinking about the NHL’s lockout strategy. Many people are still convinced the league will permit stalled negotiations to extend into February… Read More

Players Losing Way More Than Money

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 4) – It’s comforting to know that locked out players in the National Hockey League have secured “rainy day” funds in the event of a protracted interruption. These funds are being augmented by part-time salaries Read More

David Cone Sparks Typical Insanity

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 3) – The wacky universe of social media is at it again – simply because there is nothing capable of enriching the drab lives of countless millions. Today’s target: New York Yankees’ broadcaster and former Read More

Yes, a Lockout Ended… Really

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 2) – Sadly, you have to be nearing 30 years of age to remember when a work stoppage in the National Hockey League ended in time to salvage part of a season. But, it did Read More

Raw Memory From Brian Burke

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 1) – Until today, I had not seen this heart-wrenching story about Brian Burke and his late son, Brendan. It was initially published in the January 2012 edition of Gentlemen’s Quarterly Magazine and re-printed in Read More

NHL Season Chopped Mid-Week

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 30) – It should come as no surprise to disgruntled fans that the NHL will begin canceling regular-season games by Wednesday. That’s the word I got late Saturday from a league source. Exactly how many Read More

Leafs Could Blow It With Kadri

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 29) – My goodness, are the standards suddenly astronomical for the worst team in the National Hockey League at the end of last season. Of course, that’s nothing new for Nazem Kadri. From the moment Read More

The Day Our [Uri]Nation Stood Still

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 28) – I remember it oh-so well: walking through the corridor at Dufferin Heights Junior-High School in North York – 13½ years of age – and returning from the most untimely bathroom visit of Read More

Leafs-Detroit ’93 Playoff Was Phenomenal

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 25) – If you aren’t old enough to remember the spring of 1993 – and just how good the Maple Leafs really were – all you have to know is your favorite team knocked off Read More

How Low Can Toronto Sink?

 By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 23) – No person – least of all, Brian Burke – requires ESPN The Magazine to determine that our city is the absolute worst in major professional sports right now. It is there for all Read More

NHL Season Could Be in Jeopardy

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 22) – While there is ample opportunity for the National Hockey League and its players to salvage the 2012-13 season, the calendar could be deceiving. “The two sides are so entrenched in their positions that Read More

Burke Not Content With Leafs

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 20) – For Brian Burke, the summer of 2012 has been all about tempering expectation. The Maple Leafs’ general manager made a couple of modest additions and suggested – rather strongly – that no further Read More

When Hockey Trumped Labor

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 19) – April 1992. September 1994 to January 1995. September 2004 to July 2005. And then today. The litany of woe in the National Hockey League is truly impressive. By comparison, Madison Avenue bumping heads Read More

Don’t Blame Leafs For Allaire Parting

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 18) – While acknowledging that it’s easy and convenient to rip the Maple Leafs nowadays, I’m not certain why colleagues in the media have accused the club of dysfunction in the wake of Francois Allaire’s Read More

Francois Allaire Done With Leafs


NHL Players Undermining Their Cause

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 16) – With minimal leverage in their labor quarrel, locked out NHL players are damaging any pretense of solidarity by scrambling for work overseas. That is the opinion of a senior NHL executive, who claimed Read More

When Toronto Reigned

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Sep. 16) – An avid sports fan in this city is clearly living through the worst of times. Four of five major professional teams are entrenched near the basement of their respective leagues: Maple Leafs in Read More
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