Should Matthews Sprout Wings?

TORONTO (May 22) — As part of his popular, weekend–notes column on Sunday, Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun posed an interesting question: “In watching [William] Nylander playing alongside Nicklas Backstrom [with Sweden at the World Hockey Championships], I couldn’t… Read More

Would Leafs Pursue a Blockbuster?

TORONTO (May 6) — If I were Lou Lamoriello, GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs, my thought–process during the summer would be two–fold: a) hoping that the elite youngsters on the hockey club can follow up their rookie efforts in… Read More

Leafs Will Scare Capitals

TORONTO (Apr. 10) — No, the Washington Capitals will not lose to the Toronto Maple Leafs. After all, the Stanley Cup playoffs never begin with the second round. Beyond that, maybe… just maybe… this is the year that Ovie and… Read More

As It Should Be

TORONTO (Apr. 8) — It is officially and undeniably crunch time for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Not unexpectedly, the quest for a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference has come down to the final weekend of the regular season and… Read More

Babcock Angle Overplayed

TORONTO (Apr. 2) — I begin this blog with somewhat of a contradiction: Though I believe Mike Babcock should be among the finalists for the Jack Adams Award as National Hockey League coach–of–the–year, I do not believe he is the… Read More

Gondola Reunion

TORONTO (Mar. 19) — Everywhere you looked at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday night, there was green. Far from me, in this forum, to buck the trend. As such, the first blog on my website (b. June 1, 2011)… Read More

Leafs Have Skill… Right?

TORONTO (Feb. 24) — It is the great paradox of the youthful, energetic and revitalized Toronto Maple Leafs: Provide the slick shooters gobs of open ice or a clean break on the opposition goalie. And then, far–more often than not,… Read More

Lamoriello Will Be “Cautious”

TORONTO (Feb. 16) — A Western Conference executive in the National Hockey League told me today that he doesn’t expect the Toronto Maple Leafs to be particularly active before the Mar. 1 trade deadline. “I’m fairly certain that Lou [Lamoriello]… Read More

It’s Babs vs. Torts at Halfway Mark

TORONTO (Jan. 15) — There remains solid evidence that the Jack Adams Award as National Hockey League coach–of–the–year is followed by impending doom. Indeed, seven of the past 11 winners have come to an ignominious end with their teams: Bob… Read More

Leafs Planning For 2020

TORONTO (Jan. 12) — It is a wonderful and rather uncomplicated time to be a fan of the improving Toronto Maple Leafs, whose youngest and most–dynamic players are skating under entry–level salary restriction. None of Connor Brown, Zach Hyman, Nikita… Read More

Leafs Need Net Insurance

TORONTO (Jan. 10) — The Maple Leafs today claimed goalie Curtis McElhinney off waivers from the Columbus Blue Jackets. If you aren’t rushing to put down a deposit on playoff tickets, you’re likely not alone. As I mentioned in my… 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

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

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

Leafs: Be Careful With JVR

TORONTO (Oct. 29) — His name is bandied about haphazardly, as if the Leafs have a ready–made clone. Trade conjecture involving James van Riemsdyk does not emanate from a source within the team; Lou Lamoriello would strangle any–such person. It… Read More

Through The Lens: Leafs vs. Florida

TORONTO (Oct. 28) — Though twice trailing on the scoreboard, the Maple Leafs performed very efficiently during Thursday night’s 3–2 victory over Florida at the Air Canada Centre. As with most coaches, Mike Babcock likes his team to be “hard… Read More

Tyson Barrie a Superb Option

TORONTO (July 4) — In their quest to obtain a legitimate No. 1 defenseman, the Toronto Maple Leafs may not find a better candidate than 24–year–old Tyson Barrie. But, the question remains: Why would the Colorado Avalanche not move heaven… Read More

“Shanaplan” Changes With Stamkos

TORONTO (June 27) — Through decades of failure, the Toronto Maple Leafs have been brilliant at selling Kool Aid to their followers. Year after year, gallons of the sugary liquid are consumed by the National Hockey League’s most dehydrated market.… Read More
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