Babcock Needs a Quick Start

TORONTO (Aug. 11) — If you talk to hockey people who talk to hockey people — as I try and do between working funeral services in my day job — what I’m about to write is a common assessment: Mike… Read More

Will Marner Follow Kawhi?

TORONTO (July 6) — While our city slept on Friday night into Saturday, Kawhi Leonard chose to join the Los Angeles Clippers as a free agent. This occurred only after the Clippers acquired star forward Paul George from the Oklahoma… Read More

Trusted Back–Up Imperative

TORONTO (June 29) — Among the myriad issues that again restricted the Toronto Maple Leafs to one playoff round in April, the reliance on a single goalie ranks near the top. Which is hardly a new subject — in this… Read More

The Leafs Will Stand Alone

TORONTO (June 9) — Let me begin today by going out on a limb and suggesting the Toronto Raptors will not lose three consecutive games to the Golden State Warriors. Though our city has seen its share of sporting collapses,… Read More

It’s Not About One Playoff Round

TORONTO (June 7) — Earlier in the week, I posted this opinion on Twitter: “We are again seeing why the Leafs, as currently made up, aren’t suited for the Stanley Cup final. They cannot remotely match the level of physical… Read More

Why Even Go There?

TORONTO (June 1) — Predictably, it took no time at all for the most–sophomoric angle to emerge from the Toronto Raptors brilliant playoff run: Has basketball become more popular in Toronto than hockey? Such a challenging question on the day… Read More

End of An Era in Oakland

TORONTO (May 28) — The Toronto Raptors and Golden State Warriors will make history in a couple of ways when they meet for the 2019 National Basketball Association title. It is, of course, the first appearance of a Canadian team… Read More

The Sound of Silence

“… and the sign said the words of the prophets are written on the subway walls… and tenement halls… and whispered through the sound… of silence.” — Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, 1965 TORONTO (May 22) — If not for… Read More

Not… Good… Enough

TORONTO (July 19) — The prevailing response to the Raptors trading DeMar DeRozan this week was so Toronto. The city that has hardly ever known prosperity among its major sports teams went all mushy. “Poor, mistreated” DeMar has to take… 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

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

25 Years Later, It Could Be Special

TORONTO (Mar. 12) — The playoff season in professional sport is often unpredictable and promises can rarely be kept. If form prevails, however, this spring could be like none other in our city’s history. The weekend past provided yet another… Read More

The Power of One

TORONTO (Sep. 18) — At no time since 1967, until now, have the Maple Leafs been one player away from challenging for the Stanley Cup. Just how significant that piece remains is a matter of opinion. In my view, it… Read More

The FAN–590 is 25 today

TORONTO (Sep. 4) — The names have changed with ownership and the unquestioned priority of television over radio — from CJCL AM–1430 to The Fan–1430; The FAN–590; Sportsnet Radio The FAN–590 and, today, Sportsnet–590 The FAN. What will never change… Read More

The Flawed Matthews Argument

TORONTO (June 5) — In early–1998, it was announced by the National Hockey League that the Toronto Maple Leafs would be moving to the Eastern Conference after 16 years of geographic displacement in the West. For reasons unexplained, the NHL… Read More

Only Once — And Never Again

TORONTO (Mar. 15) — This website is blatantly hockey–centric, which belies the fervor with which I followed the National Football League during my teenage years in the 1970’s. What an era that was — with the Miami Dolphins, Pittsburgh Steelers,… Read More

It’s Bills over Leafs — By A Mile

TORONTO (Dec. 29) — A sports fan in this region should have no difficulty empathizing with his or her counterpart in the city of Buffalo, New York. And, it has little to do with the 175-kilometer (80–mile) proximity — much… Read More

Leafs: Is The Magic Number 52?

TORONTO (June 20) — At 10:45 p.m. Eastern on Sunday night, Adam Silver, commissioner of the National Basketball Association, stood center–court at Oracle Arena in Oakland; microphone in hand. “To northeast–Ohio and Cleveland,” Silver proclaimed, “the curse is over. The… Read More
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