We Miss You, Big Irishman

TORONTO (Nov. 23) — Even in the clutch of terminal illness, Pat Quinn struck a stately pose. The portrait, below, was snapped on July 24, 2014 — four months before the Big Irishman succumbed to a liver ailment at 71… Read More

How Long Can It Last?

TORONTO (Nov. 21) — Happy six–month anniversary, Mike Babcock. It was back on May 21 that you peered into a bevy of cameras at 40 Bay St. and promised “pain.” You delivered — for about five weeks. Now, the discomfort… Read More

Babcock’s Job On The Line

TORONTO (Nov. 19) — After the all–hands–in pursuit of Mike Babcock over the summer, it may come as a shock that Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment is reconsidering its commitment to the veteran coach. “He simply isn’t doing what we… Read More

Domi’s Book Is Honest, Respectful

TORONTO (Nov. 17) — It could have been the kiss–and–tell book of all time in the National Hockey League. I knew Tie Domi well enough in his playing days with the Toronto Maple Leafs to vouch for the 300 pages… Read More

More “Coach Killers” Needed

TORONTO (Nov. 12) — It is disconcerting, yet inevitable, that much of the narrative early in this National Hockey League season surrounds the dearth of scoring. Disconcerting because goals provide entertainment. Inevitable because an entire decade has passed since the… Read More

Bibeau Could Become No. 62

TORONTO (Nov. 8) — What better occasion to discuss goaltending than the 91st birthday of Johnny Bower — the most popular and beloved player in Toronto Maple Leafs history? Had there been a few more of his genre, it’s possible… Read More

Russell Martin Was Almost Steve Smith

TORONTO (Oct. 15) — I’m not sure we can imagine the coming off–season for Russell Martin were he not part of the most explosive team in Major League Baseball. Perhaps only one man — currently an assistant coach with the… Read More

Debating the Leafs — Two Weeks Later

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 10) — Where on Earth did time go? As I was penning the headline to this blog, I nearly wrote, “Debating the Leafs — One Week Later.” Then it hit me: The Connor McDavid draft… Read More

Leafs Still Bucking Convention

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 26) — The Toronto Maple Leafs have promised to become traditional with respect to building a Stanley Cup–caliber team. No more quick fixes. No more first–rounders traded. But, there is still much about the Maple… Read More

Leafs Working Hard on Kessel

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 23) — I was in that wonderful, relaxing crossroad between lucidity and full slumber when my damned BlackBerry roared to life at three minutes past midnight this a.m. Snapping awake and momentarily pissed off, I… Read More

Blackhawks Are Great, But Not a Dynasty

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 16) — After winning their third Stanley Cup title in six seasons on Monday — and first at the United Center — the Chicago Blackhawks, I’m quite certain, could not care less whether others consider… Read More

Leafs May Be Targeting Carolina

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 10) — It is common, predictable and widely anticipated. The three–week period before the National Hockey League draft becomes replete with tales of earth–shattering movement between teams that hold the top selections and rivals looking… Read More

Why Would Leafs Trade No. 4 Pick?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 8) — This is uncertain territory, Leafs Nation. Though it required minimal effort, your favorite hockey club went through a tanking exercise last season to obtain prime real estate in a bountiful draft — one… Read More

Vintage NHL Jerseys

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 25) — With only eight shopping months remaining until Christmas, here’s a wonderful idea for the old fart in your life: Buy him a vintage National Hockey League jersey. I’m serious. He’ll wear it to… Read More

The Leafs Go-For-Broke Theory

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 27) — I was in the north part of this city on Thursday with a friend — a self–made, well-to–do man involved in sports who has a close relative playing elsewhere in the National Hockey… Read More

Will Leafs Match Dubious History?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 16) — It has been quite awhile since the Maple Leafs endured a clean sweep on a three–game journey to Calgary, Vancouver and Edmonton — which will be the club’s fate tonight should it lose… Read More

Leafs Will Battle Only Themselves

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Feb. 25) — Truth be known, and despite popular opinion, our city has long provided the most amenable climate in which to build a contending team in the National Hockey League. It’s those entrusted the choreRead More

Leafs Looking Ominously Familiar

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Dec. 28) — In hindsight, there was nothing transparently wrong with the Maple Leafs the last time, prior to Sunday evening, they coughed up a two–goal lead in the third period. It occurred on Oct. 17,… Read More
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