Babcock Made The Difference

TORONTO (Feb. 20) — I’m not sure what was said, or at what volume, in the visitors’ dressing room during the first intermission last night in St. Louis. All I do know is the Maple Leafs were a far–better team… Read More

Leafs, Bruins Starting To Pull Away

TORONTO (Feb. 16) — That dream match–up between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs is beginning to look more like a fantasy. As expected. Squarely to blame are the Leafs… Read More

Leafs’ Task is Somewhat Clear

TORONTO (Feb. 5) — True, this may be stating the obvious: But, if Auston Matthews is the straw that stirs the drink for the Maple Leafs, the longest current Stanley Cup drought must be eradicated in the next five years.… Read More

Babcock Needs a Playoff Win

TORONTO (Jan. 28) — Given the mammoth contract (eight years, $50 million) he signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs on May 21, 2015, it could seem incomprehensible for someone other than Mike Babcock to coach the hockey club next season.… Read More

Leafs Will Figure Something Out

TORONTO (Jan. 21) — To hammer–and–tong on the Maple Leafs right now would be piling on… and lack creativity. Rarely is it a challenge to kick someone — or something — when it’s down. So, we’ll begin this blog by… Read More

So, Who Can Kyle Trade?

TORONTO (Jan. 20) — Let’s begin this blog with process of elimination: Kyle Dubas, rookie general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, promised William Nylander — publicly — that he won’t be traded “as long as I’m running the hockey… Read More

Is Simmonds Worth Nylander?

TORONTO (Jan. 11) — The best teams in the National Hockey League can often rely on skill to achieve a particular level… and there may be no better example, right now, than the Toronto Maple Leafs. On occasion, however, a… Read More

Leafs Won’t Mortgage at Deadline

TORONTO (Jan. 9) — Isn’t it rather amazing how three losses in four games can alter a team’s posture in the parity–stricken National Hockey League? Throughout the first half of the 2018–19 schedule, the Toronto Maple Leafs lingered second in… Read More

Andersen Situation Double–Edged

TORONTO (Jan. 6) — Pending the outcome, it could be a blessing or a curse that largely impacts the Maple Leafs this season. By tomorrow night (Monday), Frederik Andersen will have accrued 15 consecutive days of rest in the middle… Read More

Imagine Kyle Going Hard For The Prize

TORONTO (Dec. 29) — Allow me, for a few minutes here, to think outside the lines on behalf of the Toronto Maple Leafs. In a football analogy, so far outside the lines as to be in the 10th row of… Read More

Leafs, Today, Are NHL’s Best

TORONTO (Dec. 25) — Yes, the standings suggest otherwise — if only slightly — and the good folks on the Gulf side of Florida may vehemently disagree. But, I say to you, on Christmas Night 2018, that the Toronto Maple… Read More

Marner Will Be The Big Challenge

TORONTO (Dec. 18) — The headline on the Toronto Star website was so understated as to be comical: Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas confident team will sign Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews to long-term contracts. Confident? The words that come… Read More

Grapes Slowing, But Still Poignant

TORONTO (Dec. 10) — Don Cherry, on Feb. 5, will be 85 years of age, having enjoyed what is likely the longest–running show for an individual in the history of television, anywhere in the world. Over 37 years, since the… Read More

Matthews is Truly Remarkable

TORONTO (Dec. 5) — I start today by posing a question that dovetails with the recent chatter about restricted free agency in the National Hockey League: Other than Connor McDavid, is there a player that deserves a more–lucrative contract than… Read More

Leafs “Can” Do Whatever They Wish

TORONTO (Dec. 4) — If I saw it once, I saw it 100 times in emails and Twitter replies: “Yes, the Leafs can keep all of William Nylander, Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews under the salary cap.” Often followed by… Read More

Nylander Contract Fair (and Movable)

TORONTO (Dec. 1) — Unlike the fruitless labor crusades of recent ilk in these parts, involving staff at York University and letter carriers at Canada Post, William Nylander did exceptionally well in withholding his services from the Toronto Maple Leafs.… Read More

Leafs Record Great… And Bizarre

TORONTO (Nov. 29) — After 26 games of the 2018–19 National Hockey League schedule, the Maple Leafs have a record more visually–conducive to baseball. Toronto is 18–8… with a big, fat “zero” in the column reserved for overtime or shootout… Read More

Nylander Options Are Unappealing

TORONTO (Nov. 17) — So, here we are, precisely two weeks from the deadline of L’Affair Nylander. With no apparent resolution in sight and only one scenario that will best–serve the Maple Leafs: a “bridge” contract of two years and… Read More
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