Leafs Appear to be Alluring

TORONTO (Sep. 13) — The loudest voices in town are calling for a championship. No fooling. Two years after finishing dead–last in the National Hockey League, and three years after the most disgraceful showing of the post–Harold Ballard era, the… Read More

The FAN–590 is 25 today

TORONTO (Sep. 4) — The names have changed with ownership and the unquestioned priority of television over radio — from CJCL AM–1430 to The Fan–1430; The FAN–590; Sportsnet Radio The FAN–590 and, today, Sportsnet–590 The FAN. What will never change… Read More

Is It Truly So Difficult?

TORONTO (Aug. 26) — We may — and I stress, may — discover once again this season just how apparently difficult it is to win the Stanley Cup. Toronto Maple Leafs–“difficult” includes not even appearing in the championship round of… Read More

Of Course, Leafs Can Stand Pat

TORONTO (June 29) — On Sunday afternoon in Chicago, moments after the 2017 National Hockey League draft, Lou Lamoriello sat alongside Mark Hunter and did what only he can do to perfection. Engaging and cooperative, the Maple Leafs general manager… 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

It Is The Blues’ Turn — Finally

TORONTO (May 11) — You may or may not be reading it here for the first time. But, I’m going to write it for the first time: When National Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman presents the 2016 Stanley Cup next… Read More

How ‘Bout That “Other Guy?”

TORONTO (Jan. 16) — No one can deny that Mike Babcock is an elite coach in the National Hockey League. And, there is absolutely no debating that Babcock is the highest–paid coach in the NHL. Ever. But, is he… Read More

How Will Leafs Break From the Break?

TORONTO (Dec. 14) — The “overachieving” Toronto Maple Leafs could resume play on Tuesday night dead–last in the National Hockey League standings. All it requires is Columbus getting to extra time at home against Tampa Bay on Monday for a… 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

Second Toronto NHL Team Any Closer?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 25) — Gary Bettman has long been careful with the word “expansion” and is not in the habit of calling news gatherings to deliberate the topic. Given that he did both on Wednesday afternoon in… 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

Should NHL Teams “Filter” Fan-Wear?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 4) — The Tampa Bay Lightning — down 1–0 to Chicago in the Stanley Cup final — has been ridiculed in some circles for prohibiting rival–team apparel in the Club sections of Amalie Arena. This… Read More

Can You Imagine?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 1) — Given that it’s April Fools Day, why not take a dive into pure fantasy? As a tortured Toronto Maple Leafs zealot, how would you like to read this somewhere down the road? DROUGHT… Read More

“It was 20 Years Ago Today…”

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Jan. 20) — Actually, and I beg pardon of The Beatles, it was 20 years ago tonight. Late tonight Eastern Standard Time. Professionally, it became a milestone — my first game covering the Toronto Maple Leafs… Read More

Crunch Time Will Define Leafs

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Oct. 6) – The Maple Leafs have successfully completed their first mission of the new season – winning five of eight exhibition games while incorporating half-a-dozen new players. Add in $3.00 a man and the entire Read More

Leafs Hiring Spott On

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 14) – Here’s a prediction: Steve Spott will be the next head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Take it to the bank. Precisely when this will happen remains a mystery but I’m thinking two… Read More

Leafs-Florida Blockbuster?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 2) – It is common knowledge that Florida Panthers are considering offers for the No. 1 pick in the National Hockey League draft later this month at Philadelphia. General manager Dale Tallon has spoken about… Read More
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