Pillar’s Lamentable Choice

***UPDATE: The Toronto Blue Jays suspended Kevin Pillar for two games on Thursday afternoon.*** TORONTO (May 18) — Let me begin today by stressing that I have long admired Kevin Pillar. Until Wednesday night, there was nothing to not admire… Read More

It’s Babcock Time

TORONTO (Apr. 23) — Everywhere you turn in this city, hockey fans are sure the Maple Leafs have a profusion of confidence heading into Game 6 tonight against the Washington Capitals. And, why not? The buoyant underdog has stayed with… Read More

Leafs Not “Heavy” Enough

TORONTO (Apr. 5) — By this time next week, Toronto hockey fans will be watching their favorite team in the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time in four years… and the first time in 13 years after a full,… Read More

Ron Wilson’s Loud Voice

TORONTO (Mar. 27) — In the early 1970’s, while in junior–high school, I would play around with the radio dial at night to determine which hockey games I could hear. After 8 o’clock, AM radio stations in the United States… Read More

Leafs Have Earned Playoff Shot

TORONTO (Mar. 22) — The math will sort itself out over the next 18 days and nights, finally determining whether the Toronto Maple Leafs partake in the Stanley Cup tournament for the first time in 13 years after a full… Read More

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

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

Leafs Will Learn — Eventually

TORONTO (Nov. 1) — It will be a tell–tale sign that the young Maple Leafs are maturing when the club approaches a double–header like this past weekend with more of a competitive edge and less satisfaction. Though it yielded zero… Read More

October Manna From Heaven

TORONTO (Oct. 13) — In a city that continues to hunger for sports accomplishment, October of 2016 has been quite remarkable. And, we still have 18 days before Halloween. It began for baseball fans, with the Toronto Blue Jays winning… Read More

Perky’s Yarns Are Overdue

TORONTO (Aug. 31) — I remember saying to myself: “Howard, just watch Dave Perkins. Observe the way he comports himself around athletes and you will learn immeasurably.” So, that’s what I did. It was Aug. 17, 1987. At Pearson International… Read More

Feeding The Beast

TORONTO (July 6) — We know this much about Auston Matthews: He is “honored.” “Honored” to be ranked as the top prospect for the 2016 National Hockey League draft. “Honored” to be part of the annual prospects media tour at… Read More

Easy Answer to Rogers NHL Ratings

TORONTO (May 31) — The article was prolific and thoroughly–researched. It had all the earmarks of a story written by James Bradshaw, the Globe and Mail’s exceptional media reporter. It was also mightily complicated and replete with industry conjecture… Read More

Toronto Maple Leafs 1967–68: Part 1

TORONTO (Feb. 25) — It was 50 years ago this month that the National Hockey League undertook the most ambitious project of all time in professional sport — agreeing to double in size from six to 12 teams. This came… Read More

Toronto Maple Leafs 1967–68: Part 2

THE LEAFS BEGAN THE SECOND HALF OF THE SEASON IN NEW YORK (STORY BELOW) ON SUNDAY, JAN. 7, 1968 AND GOT HAMMERED BY THE RANGERS IN THEIR FINAL VISIT TO THE OLD MADISON SQUARE GARDEN AT 8th AVE. AND 49th Read More

Phaneuf Trade Sets Up “Basement Bowl”

TORONTO (Feb. 10) — Give the Toronto Maple Leafs credit (or blame). With several recent chances to fall into sole possession of 30th place in the National Hockey League, the club has managed to stray from the cellar, rocketing as… Read More

Might Lou Go Bigger At The Deadline?

TORONTO (Feb. 8) — Corralling a company secret from Lou Lamoriello is the rough equivalent of a dentist trying to pull a tooth from a live shark. It may not be as hazardous, but you’ll achieve the same result. Back… Read More

The Corp Was Snoozing

TORONTO (Feb. 7) — Over the span of four decades, Darryl Sittler has been celebrated and cursed by nostalgic followers of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Celebrated for his 10–point eruption against Boston at Maple Leaf Gardens on this date 40… Read More

Leafs Still Need A Horse

TORONTO (Jan. 20) — As the Maple Leafs build toward what could be a promising future, they must garner two obvious needs: a reliable No. 1 goalie and a legitimate stud on the blue line. Neither commodity is apparent with… Read More
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