Leafs Still Hard to Gauge

TORONTO (Dec. 21) — Frederik Andersen provides a glaring example of why the Toronto Maple Leafs are so difficult to assess while approaching the midway point of this development season. Clearly, Andersen has supplied the Leafs a noticeable upgrade between… Read More

Fun With Vintage NHL Jerseys

I DEDICATE THIS BLOG TO THE GURU–MASTER OF NHL EXPANSION, SCOTTY BOWMAN. TORONTO (Dec. 19) — With my son, Shane, in town from Guelph for the Christmas break, I started shuffling through my closet of vintage National Hockey League… Read More

No Escaping The Sh– House

TORONTO (Dec. 17) — Though Mike Babcock is decorated, highly–regarded (by most) and compensated more lavishly than any coach in National Hockey League history, his sh– house has no back door. Once inside, you’re liable to decompose with the contents.… Read More

Wilson Recovering After Stroke

TORONTO (Dec. 15) — Former National Hockey League defenseman and head coach Ron Wilson says he is doing his utmost to rehab from a stroke suffered in the first week of December. Upon sending an email of support to Wilson… Read More

Of Losing a Child

W. BLOOMFIELD, Mich. (Dec. 13) — For the purpose of this hockey–first website, Jamie Daniels was (and always will be) the son of Detroit Red Wings’ TV broadcaster Ken Daniels and his former wife, Lisa. Had Jamie been the child… Read More

Oh My God…

UPDATE FROM KEN DANIELS: This blog was written with a heavy heart on Thursday. Today (Saturday), Ken passed along these remarks from Detroit: “The hockey world has been an incredible, extended family for us [during] these past few days that Read More

A Shopping (Horror) Story

TORONTO (Dec. 8) — This is not a blanket indictment of the shopping wing on the National Hockey League’s official website — NHL.com (http://atnhl.com/2h6SN1T). For all I know, I could be the only person to have had a calamitous ordeal… Read More

What’s A Back–Up Goalie?

TORONTO (Dec. 6) — By waiving Jhonas Enroth on Monday afternoon, Lou Lamoriello acknowledged his first mistake as general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs. But, he came by the blunder honestly. You may recall that Lou built and GM’d… Read More

Lou in the Loo

VANCOUVER (Dec. 4) — I was hoping to say hello to Lou Lamoriello on Saturday night at Rogers Arena, having seen the Maple Leafs general manager from afar at the University of British Columbia on Friday (the Leafs practiced there).… Read More

Rielly Will Be the Leafs Captain

VANCOUVER (Dec. 3) — It’s a no–brainer. And, it should happen by next season. Morgan Rielly will become the 18th captain in Toronto Maple Leafs history. There is no longer any reason for the club to delay its quest. The… Read More

Kadri Had To Bite His Tongue

VANCOUVER (Dec. 2) — Nearly 7½ years after being chosen in the first round of the National Hockey League draft, Nazem Kadri might be getting a fair shake. But, even that is uncertain… and open to interpretation. From the moment,… Read More

An Empty Feeling on the Coast

VANCOUVER (Dec. 1) — For the better part of an hour, I could not understand it. Yes, rain was falling when I arrived here earlier today, but it always rains in Vancouver at this time of year; at last count,… Read More

Do The Leafs Have A “Limit”?

TORONTO (Nov. 29) — In a year when the Chicago Cubs win a baseball title; a 15–1 team loses the Super Bowl; a 73–9 basketball team blows a 3–1 Finals lead and is defeated at home in Game 7 and… Read More

The Leafs At the Quarter–Pole

TORONTO (Nov. 24) — Over–achievement? Moderate achievement? And, does it really matter? These are questions that come to mind with respect to the Toronto Maple Leafs after 20 games of the 2016–17 National Hockey League season. Clearly, the team is… Read More

Oliver Ekman–“Leafs”son?

TORONTO (Nov. 22) — In their interminable quest to secure a legitimate, No. 1 defenseman, the Maple Leafs could be eyeing Oliver Ekman–Larsson of the Arizona Coyotes. So says one of my Phoenix bird–dogs. “This is for later in the… Read More

Marner No Surprise Here

TORONTO (Nov. 18) — If the Calder Trophy were awarded today, there’s little doubt that Patrik Laine of the Winnipeg Jets would be the winner with a league–best 12 goals in 19 games. But, Mitch Marner of the Maple Leafs… Read More

Cancer Strikes The Booth — Again

TORONTO (Nov. 17) — God–friggin’ dammit! For the second time in just more than a decade, cancer has reared its despicable head in the Toronto Blue Jays radio booth. Only this time, we’re anticipating a far–better result. Eleven years–and–a–bit since… Read More

When is Joe Bowen’s Turn?

TORONTO (Nov. 14) — There is no arguing the merit of the two gentlemen inducted this year into the media wing of the Hockey Hall of Fame. Bob Verdi is the dean of sports columnists in Chicago and has covered… Read More
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