Matthews’ Leaf Days Are Numbered

TORONTO (Nov. 16) — One more chance. That’s all the Maple Leafs have without Auston Matthews. One final opportunity — against New Jersey, tonight — to prove they can sh** the bed in the absence of their best player. “If… Read More

Leafs Will Improve… Won’t They?

TORONTO (June 21) — The warnings were in place; unheeded, and verily scoffed at by fans of the record–setting Toronto Maple Leafs. The same warnings that are certain to be ignored later tonight in Las Vegas after what should be… Read More

Does The Shanaplan Prevail?

TORONTO (Apr. 25) — Rapid achievement in professional sport can be intoxicating. And, hauntingly mercurial if not guided by a steady hand. With that in mind, we wonder how the Toronto Maple Leafs might proceed after graduating from the National… Read More

Leafs Facing Worst Ever (Sort Of)

TORONTO (Apr. 12) — After missing the playoffs in 10 of the past 11 years, the Maple Leafs return to the Stanley Cup hunt against the worst team in National Hockey League history. Yes, without a doubt, the Washington Capitals… 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

Face Off at Mike’s Museum

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 8) — It was Dec. 4, 1971. A Saturday night, two months before my 13th birthday. My uncle, Ralph Blatt, took me to the Toronto–Boston National Hockey League game at Maple Leaf Gardens. In town… Read More

45 Years Since Pat Quinn/Bobby Orr

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 2) – Now that Maple Leafs have actually won a game, you’ll excuse me for recalling an occasion when they lost, 10-0. In the playoffs, no less. Against Bobby Orr and the Big, Bad Bruins,… Read More

Kessel Deserves More Credit

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (May 1) – Phil Kessel’s reward for finishing eighth in NHL scoring this season is merely a reduction of the criticism that has marked his time in a Maple Leafs jersey – a back-handed honor of Read More

Pre-Expansion Battle Looming

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Apr. 9) – Cue the history books. With nine games left in the regular season, it appears rather likely that Toronto Maple Leafs will hook up with either Boston or Montreal in the opening round of Read More

My Ten Worst NHL Moves – Part 1

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (Mar. 16) – I got around, the other day, to reading a book by Dick Irvin – published in 1993 – and called BEHIND THE BENCH. Irvin interviewed 28 NHL coaches about their experience in the Read More
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