Way Too Early… Except For One

TORONTO (Oct. 12) — It has been a difficult second week of the National Hockey League season in the land of the blue Maple Leaf, inciting many  — predictably — to draw conclusions. There is the small matter of 77… Read More

Battle Lines Drawn Early

TORONTO (Oct. 2) — In case you are wondering whether Mike Babcock and Kyle Dubas became warm and fuzzy during the off–season, consider the message sent by the long–time, grizzled coach to his still–newbie general manager prior to the regular–season… Read More

The Leafs Will Tease, But Fall Short

TORONTO (Oct. 1) — Do not be surprised if the 2019–20 National Hockey League season is the most–prolific in the 103–year history of the Toronto Maple Leafs. If healthy, the Leafs could challenge for the Presidents’ Trophy as the No.… Read More

How Low Can It Go?

TORONTO (Sep. 22) — Not much about the deterioration of the Toronto Argonauts surprises me anymore, but I admit to gasping at the announced attendance–figure for Friday night’s home game against the Grey Cup–champion Calgary Stampeders. Apparently, 9,819 souls made… Read More

No Change In Marner Saga

TORONTO (Sep. 5) — Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas claims he is “confident” of signing restricted free agent Mitch Marner before a chunk of training camp is lost (cautionary note: the club’s first workout in St. John’s is “Friday… Read More

Was It Worth Our Prostitution?

TORONTO (July 8) — Perhaps never in North American history has a proud, diverse city “gone down” on a person as Toronto did Kawhi Leonard during his apparent struggle to choose between re–signing with the Raptors or fleeing to Los… 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

Leafs Going For a Three–Peat

TORONTO (July 3) — What’s all this drivel about the Toronto Maple Leafs and a Stanley Cup “drought”? Why do people keep referring to 1967? Anyone paying attention would know the Leafs have now won consecutive National Hockey League titles…… 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

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

Again — Why Not Rick?

TORONTO (May 14) — Barring the unforeseen, Brendan Shanahan will remain in the president’s chair of the Toronto Maple Leafs through the 2024–25 National Hockey League season after agreeing, early this week, to a six–year contract extension. We can merely… Read More

A Big Moment… But How Big?

TORONTO (May 13) — Though it ranks among the most dramatic and breathtaking moments in the modern history of professional sport in this city, I’m not entirely sure what to make of Kawhi Leonard’s bounce…bounce…bounce series–winning shot against the Philadelphia… Read More

Sittler, Kelly and Pyramid Power

TORONTO (May 2) — The telephone rang in Darryl Sittler’s midtown–Toronto home just after 11 o’clock this morning. On the other end was Patrick Kelly, son of Maple Leafs legend Red Kelly. Patrick had solemn news. “He told me Red… Read More

It’s That Date Again

NOTE: After sending this blog, I received word of the sad coincidence that Leonard (Red) Kelly — a key figure on the 1967 Maple Leafs and coach of the club from 1973–77 — passed away today at 91. Such a Read More

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

Forget Sheldon Keefe — For Now

TORONTO (Apr. 20) — To paraphrase Mark Twain from 122 years ago, “rumors of Mike Babcock’s death have been greatly exaggerated.” The future of the Toronto Maple Leafs coach drove the dialogue as recently as Friday evening on Prime Time Read More

Sorry, But This One’s On Freddy

TORONTO (Apr. 18) — During Coach’s Corner in the first intermission of Wednesday night’s game, Don Cherry called Frederik Andersen “the best goalie in the world right now.” To support his opinion, Cherry showed the highlight of a difficult save… Read More

Leafs Playoff Path Is Wide Open

What if Columbus shocked the Lightning; Washington beat Carolina; the Leafs upset Boston and the Islanders defeated Pittsburgh? Second–round match–ups would be Washington vs. New York Islanders and Toronto vs. Columbus; the Maple Leafs with home–ice advantage. Strange stuff, indeed, Read More
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