Leafs’ Old Nucleus Still Alive

“Randy Carlyle can coach; Dion Phaneuf can play effectively with lots of ice time and Phil Kessel can score with the best of them. Individually, they would be sound elements of any team in the NHL. As a tandem, and Read More

Leafs Need To Extend Lamoriello

TORONTO (Mar. 2) — Exactly how the Maple Leafs will be generally managed beyond next season may or may not be a topic of internal debate at the Air Canada Centre. Lou Lamoriello, destined for the Builders’ wing in the… Read More

Leafs Will Sizzle… Then Fizzle

TORONTO (Oct. 12) — Six months and three days after last watching the Toronto Maple Leafs in a game that counted, a new season begins with curiosity and bridled excitement. A 5–1 defeat at New Jersey on Apr. 9 enabled… Read More

Kessel Was Full Value, But…

TORONTO (June 14) — Fans of the Maple Leafs should not begrudge Phil Kessel for raising the Stanley Cup. Kessel was hardly a passenger in the 2016 playoffs, leading Pittsburgh in scoring with 10 goals and 22 points. It proved… Read More

Leafs Triumverate Dissolved — Finally

The Maple Leafs are pretty much the same and will stay that way until the failed nucleus (of Randy Carlyle, Dion Phaneuf, Phil Kessel) is addressed. — BERGER BYTES, July 10, 2014. TORONTO (Feb. 10, 2016) — And here we… Read More

Leafs Motor Along As Usual

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 24) — If you believe that success or failure begins at the top of any company or enterprise, the Toronto Maple Leafs will end the longest Stanley Cup drought at some point in the foreseeable… Read More

Lamoriello Will Not “Mentor” Anyone

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 23) — Put your hands up, all of you that anticipated Lou Lamoriello would be named “new” general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs (stunned expressions; arms at side). I thought so. Count me vehemently… Read More

Might Leafs Already Have Their GM?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 4) — Kyle Dubas is a young man with a boy’s face. And, he just helped to pull off one of the most important trades in recent Toronto Maple Leafs history — the multi–component deal… Read More

Leafs Make Superb Deal For Kessel

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 1) — Happy Canada Day, Leafs Nation. Your team can now begin wobbling toward contention under Mike Babcock. The new, much–celebrated coach made it clear while negotiating his monster, eight–year deal that the Leafs could… Read More

Leafs Still Bucking Convention

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 26) — The Toronto Maple Leafs have promised to become traditional with respect to building a Stanley Cup–caliber team. No more quick fixes. No more first–rounders traded. But, there is still much about the Maple… Read More

Maintain Sanity, Leafs Nation

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 26) — While some Toronto media are tossing out such terms as “franchise–altering” to characterize the weekend, it’s probably wise to remember your Maple Leafs are at the very beginning of their construction process. Yes,… Read More

Leafs Working Hard on Kessel

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 23) — I was in that wonderful, relaxing crossroad between lucidity and full slumber when my damned BlackBerry roared to life at three minutes past midnight this a.m. Snapping awake and momentarily pissed off, I… Read More

Eastern Scout: “Leafs Should Draft Hanifin”

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 21) — “In any other draft year, I firmly believe that Noah Hanifin would be the top–rated prospect. He is that good.” Appropriately, and barring an unforeseen development, the Eastern Conference bird–dog that provided me… Read More

Leafs Options May Be Limited

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 13) — In their quest to sell off as many “assets” as possible, the Toronto Maple Leafs will discover that the rest of the National Hockey League was paying attention to their plight last season.… Read More

Leafs May Be Targeting Carolina

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 10) — It is common, predictable and widely anticipated. The three–week period before the National Hockey League draft becomes replete with tales of earth–shattering movement between teams that hold the top selections and rivals looking… Read More

Why Would Leafs Trade No. 4 Pick?

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (June 8) — This is uncertain territory, Leafs Nation. Though it required minimal effort, your favorite hockey club went through a tanking exercise last season to obtain prime real estate in a bountiful draft — one… Read More

Leafs Need Hunter in Current Role

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (May 24) — Now that Mike Babcock will not be named general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs (confirmed) — and has told the hockey universe there is no provision in his contract with respect to… Read More

Leafs Should Sign American Pharoah

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (May 17) — Forget Mike Babcock. What the Maple Leafs need is a leader on the ice. A real horse. Someone with killer instinct who can play in all conditions and has no fear of being… Read More
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