Of Course Nylander Will Be Dealt

TORONTO (Nov. 12) — How many times can we put a different spin on the same likelihood? Let us count. Toronto’s three–player nucleus beyond the coming season will be Tavares, Matthews and Marner. The Nylander contract stalemate… is… Read More

Too Early For Injury–Prone Label

TORONTO (Oct. 28) — The shoulder ailment that could sideline Auston Matthews for an appreciable term may prompt fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs to wonder if a career pattern has beset their best player. After all, Matthews sat out… Read More

My Prized Baseball Possessions

TORONTO (Oct. 23) — Yes, it was 25 years ago tonight that Joe Carter tomahawked a Mitch Williams delivery into the left–field stands at SkyDome (now Rogers Centre), providing the Toronto Blue Jays their second World Series conquest in as… 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

The Funeral of Hope

TORONTO (May 27) — It was 25 years ago tonight. Really. May 27, 1993 in Inglewood, California. On the Berger calendar, it ranks as the most compelling game involving the Maple Leafs that yours truly has attended — as a… 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

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

No One Has A Clue

TORONTO (Apr. 25) — Believe, only at your peril, anything you hear about this or that person comprehending what may happen in Game 7 of the Maple Leafs–Boston Bruins Stanley Cup series. The fact remains that nobody has a clue… Read More

Freddy Needs Rest, Not Rhythm

TORONTO (Mar. 4) — There is no attempt here to jump on a bandwagon with the Maple Leafs in their first minor funk since mid–January (0–2–1 on a four–game road trip that concludes Monday night in Buffalo). This is still… Read More

Why Would The Leafs Trade JVR?

TORONTO (Feb. 9) — As you settle into my Friday blog, pause for a moment and ask yourself this question: Do the Toronto Maple Leafs have a reasonable chance of winning the Stanley Cup this season? When I say “reasonable”,… Read More

Could Leafs Pull a Trade Shocker?

TORONTO (Feb. 3) — I received a largely unexpected call on Friday from a long–time media contact in Ottawa. A person with whom I had routinely made acquiescence in the press box at the Canadian Tire Centre (and elsewhere around… Read More

We’ve Seen It All Before (sigh)

TORONTO (Jan. 24) — The Maple Leafs play the Blackhawks tonight in Chicago, which may not be a good thing. The last Toronto victory at the United Center was so long ago, I covered it for The FAN–590. That would… Read More

Babcock’s Honeymoon Has Ended

TORONTO (Jan. 20) — For more than 2½ years, in what is often described as the National Hockey League’s toughest media market, it’s been “hands off the head coach”. That privilege, it seemed, arrived in our town with the largest… Read More

Bruce Hood: 1936–2018

TORONTO (Jan. 6) — In mid–November, as he lay struggling with cancer at a Guelph, Ont. hospital, Bruce Hood received a surprise visit from one of his favorite people on Earth. Today — and sadly — Bruce and Johnny Bower… Read More

Are Leafs Using Smoke and Mirrors?

TORONTO (Nov. 30) — So, if we were warned — two months ago today — that William Nylander and Mitch Marner would succumb to the usual sophomore difficulty (a combined six goals in 26 games); that Auston Matthews would miss… Read More

Villain of the Anonymous

TORONTO (Nov. 24) — This past week rekindled wondrous memories from my time covering the Maple Leafs for The FAN–590. Particularly, the era that began in the summer of 2005, when Dwayne Klessel — known better as “Eklund” — asked… Read More
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