It’s a Best-of-1 Out West

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 29) – Los Angeles Kings are poised to become only the fourth National Hockey League team to rebound from a 3-0 deficit in games and win a best-of-seven playoff series. A controversial 4-1 victory by… Read More

One Year Later, It’s the Raptors

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 28) – One thing we can say about teams that call Air Canada Centre home: When they make the playoffs, they tend to overachieve. Of course, it is all relative. Neither the Maple Leafs last… Read More

MacLean Rebuke Crosses the Line

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 26) – Let me emphasize that I have nothing against French-Canadian people any more than African-Americans, Asians or another ethnicity. They – and we – are human beings and so long as we are peaceful… Read More

Leafs Nation Too Bitter

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 24) – Yes, Leaf fan, I get it. You’d rather have hemorrhoids than watch the Montreal Canadiens knife through the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Especially when “Stanley Cup playoffs” is such a… Read More

For Howard Starkman

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 22) – We share a given name and we shared (more than 20 years ago) – he as the Blue Jays media relations director; me as a reporter for The FAN-590 – several of the … Read More

Leafs Fans Watching REAL Hockey

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 20) – If you aren’t altogether sure of the immense gulf that exists between the Maple Leafs and any of the Stanley Cup contenders, watch Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues. After two minutes, you’ll… Read More

Comparing Notes With David Shoalts

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 16) – The first time I met David Shoalts, he looked at me disdainfully and said I was too big for my britches. That was more than three decades ago (in February 1982) when we… Read More

Carlyle Deserves Respectful Departure

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 16) – I am of two minds when it comes to the Maple Leafs muddled coaching situation. On one hand, I think Brendan Shanahan has already made his first mistake as president of the club… Read More

Shanahan: Good First Impression

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 14) – It required roughly 15 seconds to gauge the difference between presidential introductions – from Brian Burke’s inauguration with the Maple Leafs on Nov. 29, 2008 to Brendan Shanahan’s official crowning earlier today. It… Read More

An Audience With Ron and Don

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 13) – Several hours before the Maple Leafs said goodbye for the season, my children – Shane and Lauren – had the privilege of saying hello to Ron MacLean and Don Cherry. Lauren had been… Read More

Why Shanahan Instead of Gilmour?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 11) – Tim Leiweke may have a grandiose vision for Brendan Shanahan within the upper reaches of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, but I can tell you this: Long-suffering fans of the Toronto Maple… Read More

All Bets Off With Shanahan’s Arrival

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 11) – Maple Leafs have commemorated the 24th anniversary of Harold Ballard’s death with new life in the form of Brendan Shanahan. History will determine whether the acquisition of another high-profile president marks a turning… Read More

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 10) – Yes, indeed, disillusioned followers of the Toronto Maple Leafs: The sun did come up on Hump Day this week, roughly nine hours after the fat lady sang her last note in Tampa. In… Read More

Leafs Ice-Level Direction Must Change

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 9) – Having missed the Stanley Cup playoffs in eight of nine springs, the genius of Issac Newton, Albert Einstein and Benjamin Franklin would unlikely be sufficient remedy for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Franklin, at… Read More

Sports Worm Here Could Easily Turn

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 8th) – There is no better time than the 37th anniversary (yesterday) of the first Blue Jays game to remember that Toronto hasn’t always been a hockey-first city. Anyone attuned to sports in this region… Read More

The Patriarch and The Mayor

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 7) – Wally Stanowski and Rob Ford were born more than 50 years apart – the former in April 1919; the latter in May 1969. But, the Patriarch of the Maple Leafs and the Mayor… Read More

Lost Decade For Maple Leafs

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 6) – I am certain the Chicago Blackhawks will tell you their Stanley Cup victory last spring was no less thrilling than in 2010. So, it may not be fair to point out the Toronto… Read More

Blue Jays Fans Can’t Escape Hockey

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 5) – The only evidence that baseball had not fully gripped this town on Friday night was the increasing clamor about the Chicago-Columbus NHL game. Just after 9:30 p.m., word spread quickly through the first… Read More
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