Not Looking Great For Babcock

TORONTO (Apr. 26) — When taking a moment to read between the lines of words spoken during the Maple Leafs’ annual locker clean–out on Thursday — and, for whatever the cryptic messages were worth — I’m sensing Mike Babcock will… Read More

Over to You, Babs

“You get the sense (Kyle) Dubas won’t mind blaming (Mike) Babcock if the coach doesn’t get this group to do what it’s supposed to do — which is, at the very least, win the franchise its first playoff series in Read More

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

Dubas Isn’t Done

TORONTO (Feb. 18) — No specifics here, except this: I’ll be very surprised if Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas does not make at least one more move before the National Hockey League trade deadline a week from today. Said… Read More

Dubas Needs To Act Fairly Soon

TORONTO (Nov. 22) — If I remember correctly, this was going to be the year the Maple Leafs not only overwhelmed rival clubs with their firepower, but also learned how to limit opportunities in the defensive zone. Not surprisingly, the… Read More

Leafs Following or Bucking Trend?

TORONTO (Sep. 19) — So, the Leafs have made it clear that they can win the Stanley Cup by loading up on forwards while comparably ignoring their blue line. Good luck to them. And, to those that concur. Neither am… Read More

How Delusion Festers

TORONTO (July 6) — For as long as anyone can remember; but, specifically, in the age of Internet and social media, the Toronto Maple Leafs have possessed as rabid and unconditionally–loyal a fan–base as any in professional sport. How do… Read More

Babcock Must ‘C’ This Through

TORONTO (July 3) — So, we wonder, even more curiously: What did Mike Babcock discuss with Auston Matthews during their post–playoff summit in Arizona? You remember: Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet claiming, after the Maple Leafs were bounced from the opening… Read More

Tavares Hunt Narrowed to Three

TORONTO (June 28) — Let’s assume, for the sake of this blog, that long–time New York hockey writer Arthur Staple (now of The Athletic) — having driven much of the John Tavares coverage — is well within the confines of… Read More

Tavares “Could Easily” Be A Leaf

TORONTO (June 25) — This is one man’s opinion and I have some difficulty sharing it. But, the one man — an amateur scout in the National Hockey League — has been around so long, he remembers watching John Tavares… Read More

Will The Leafs Be Next?

TORONTO (June 16) — A cynic would contend it is thoroughly emblematic of this city that our three “least–fashionable” sports teams have won championships in the past 6½ months. No disrespect to the Argonauts, Toronto F.C. or the Marlies, but… Read More

Leafs Kept Their Promise

TORONTO (May 12) — After the extraordinary maneuver of preventing a young executive from advancement in the National Hockey League, the Toronto Maple Leafs came through for Kyle Dubas. Though Dubas was given permission, last summer, to be interviewed by… Read More

Smoke and Mirrors Around Here

TORONTO (May 8) — Perhaps never in the professional sports annals of this city has a pair of clubs — 12 nights apart — rendered the six–month–long regular season so thoroughly pointless. The Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors, after… Read More

Laine or Auston? What About Lou?

TORONTO (May 2) — It’s that date again. For the 51st time. The end of the six–team era in the National Hockey League. The beginning of the longest–ever Stanley Cup famine. Yes, there was pandemonium, Toronto style, 51 years ago… Read More

Only Burke Can Replace Cherry

TORONTO (Apr. 28) — Let’s assume, for a moment, that Don Cherry is unlikely to be a mainstay on Hockey Night In Canada for another 38 years. Though Donald S. seems indestructible — in our livingrooms each Saturday since 1980… Read More

And the Wait Continues

TORONTO (Apr. 26) — Quite the coincidence that fewer than 24 hours after another failed Stanley Cup bid by the Toronto Maple Leafs, Dave Keon was announced as an inductee into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. Considered the greatest… Read More

Freddy Had Nothing Left

TORONTO (Apr. 26) — This is not to invoke the blame game. And, yes, hindsight is an incomparable ally. But, in the end — when the fat lady approached the microphone in this record–breaking season — the Toronto Maple Leafs’… Read More

It’s Babcock Time

TORONTO (Apr. 15) — So, this is what you get for 50 million dollars? Okay, I’m being a trifle facetious… but c’mon. The Maple Leafs did not lure Mike Babcock from Detroit with the National Hockey League’s most–lucrative coaching pact… Read More
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