“By the Time We Got to Woodstock…”

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 16) – Jesus, I’m old. How many reading this remember where they were at 9:32 a.m. EDT 45 years ago today? If they were around 45 years ago today? I didn’t think so. At the… Read More

Carter Said a Mouthful

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 15) – It required 82 regular season and 26 playoff games – 8½ months of grueling hockey – for Jeff Carter to deliver a message to which the Toronto Maple Leafs and their gaggle of… Read More

Carlyle Gets Two-Year Extension

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (May 8) – It appears, at the moment, the Maple Leafs hired Brendan Shanahan so he could help convince general manager David Nonis to fire Randy Carlyle’s assistant coaches. If so, mission accomplished. In what has… 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

45 Years Since Pat Quinn/Bobby Orr

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 2) – Now that Maple Leafs have actually won a game, you’ll excuse me for recalling an occasion when they lost, 10-0. In the playoffs, no less. Against Bobby Orr and the Big, Bad Bruins,… Read More

Leafs Desperately Need First Wild-Card

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 22) – Welcome to spring, when the leaves bloom and the Leafs often wither. Three weeks remain in the 2013-14 National Hockey League schedule and only one team has clinched a spot in the Stanley… Read More

2014 Stanley Cup: St. Louis Blues

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Feb. 5) – Call me crazy, if you wish (it will hardly be the first time), but, I’m damned serious when I contend the St. Louis Blues will finally win their first Stanley Cup this spring.… Read More

Early Yuletide For Leafs Fans

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Dec. 15) – I remember the game as if it were yesterday, but I still had to look up the date (I’m only so much a hockey savant). Though merely 15 years old, I somehow felt… Read More

Leafs Missing Only “Stage” Wins

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Nov. 21) – Including injuries, the Toronto Maple Leafs have overcome every obstacle in their path during the first quarter of the National Hockey League season. Except for one. Though points earned in the standings may… Read More

No Mercy – Ever – For Dion Phaneuf

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (May 10) – Any comparison to the greatest player in the history of the National Hockey League rings with absurdity. So, please understand I am not making that comparison here. Today’s date, however, has conspired to Read More

Kadri Not Surprising Me

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 22) – No, I neither predicted nor believed that Nazem Kadri would be among the top ten scorers in the National Hockey League at any point this season, let alone the two-thirds mark. I also Read More

Leafs vs. Bruins: Two Solitudes

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Feb. 2) – For a dedicated Leaf fan, tonight’s visit to Air Canada Centre by the Boston Bruins should perhaps include one of those TV warnings: “The following program may contain images that are disturbing to Read More

The First Expansion Cup

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Jan. 2) – If you are interested, and choose to look, you will find historic meaning to just about every final series in Stanley Cup history. Be it a one-off championship [Carolina 2006; Anaheim 2007] or Read More

What a Week: Grapes and Orr

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Nov. 9) – For those who have forgotten, hockey is a terrific, multi-dimensional sport – capable of sustaining itself at the worst of times. With the game in a holding pattern once again, it requires no Read More

Why NHL Will Not Re-Locate to Toronto

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 26) – Do not expect the Phoenix Coyotes, New Jersey Devils, Florida Panthers, or any club bleeding red ink in the National Hockey League to re-locate here in the Greater Toronto Area. It has nothing 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
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