The Crazy Ballard Media Years

TORONTO (Dec. 28) — It is still, in my view, the best book ever written about the Toronto Maple Leafs. In particular, the absurdity and madness that prevailed around Maple Leaf Gardens in the final years of the Harold Ballard… Read More

Dubas Needs Work On His Math

***UPDATE DEC. 27 3:15 a.m. — This blog was written and posted just after midnight. A few hours later, the NHL, as predicted, postponed the Pittsburgh at Toronto game, slated for Wednesday night. The Maple Leafs are next scheduled to Read More

Expect the NHL to Pause Until 2022

TORONTO (Dec. 25) — It isn’t likely the merriest Christmas amid the tall thinkers in the National Hockey League, who are spending this holy day forming a rescue plan for the 2021–22 season. Despite vaccination that was hopeful of eradicating… Read More

The NHL and Omicron, Moving Forward

TORONTO (Dec. 22) — Welcome to the 2021 Christmas break, where people that normally travel to exotic destinations are staying put and the main roads here in Toronto are typically snarled from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. I suspect it’s… Read More

NHL Season in Grave Peril

TORONTO (Dec. 19) — Through no fault of its own, and with rapid suddenness, the National Hockey League is watching its 2021–22 season go down the drain. Or, at least form a huge vortex near the drain. Until the final… Read More

What is the NHL Waiting For?

***UPDATE Dec. 18 10:55 p.m. Eastern — The COVID protocol list of the Toronto Maple Leafs now includes coach Sheldon Keefe and seven players: Jason Spezza, John Tavares, Alex Kerfoot, Jack Campbell, T.J. Brodie, Travis Dermott and Wayne Simmonds. All… Read More

Pause Now or Pay Later

*** UPDATE Dec. 18 — It became official just after 2 p.m. Eastern. The National Hockey League confirmed that the Maple Leafs road games tonight in Vancouver and tomorrow in Seattle have been postoned as a result of COVID–19.*** *** Read More

Forget About NHL at the Olympics

TORONTO (Dec. 14) — It is alarming and confounding to witness the effect that COVID–19 is having on the apparently vaccinated National Hockey League. The virus protocol lists are expanding by the day… as are games requiring postponement. On Monday,… Read More

Inner–Sanctum Chaos With The Argos

TORONTO (Dec. 11) — It’s a venerable, timeworn bromide that rings as accurately today as whenever it first appeared: “You reap what you sow.” As such, the Toronto Argonauts of the Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment era have fully warranted… Read More

Maybe It’s Time For Quebec City

TORONTO (Dec. 9) — The National Hockey League routinely discredits the annual value–ranking of its teams by Forbes Magazine, suggesting that no outside entity can provide an accurate appraisal. For the moment, however, let’s assume that Forbes was in the… Read More

A Truly Magical Morning

TORONTO (Dec. 8) — I can close my eyes and still capture the scene from 52 years ago last month: a dark, rainy afternoon at CNE Stadium on Nov. 2, 1969. It was my second live Canadian Football League game… Read More

More Funny Leafs/NHL Stories

TORONTO (Dec. 3) — Sports humor, by its very nature, can be a bit raunchy. If you are prim and proper, I suggest you not read beyond this opening line. Otherwise, I suspect you’ll have a laugh or two. Maybe… Read More

What to do With Petr Mrazek?

TORONTO (Nov. 28) — Rather by accident, it appears the Toronto Maple Leafs have a $3.8 million albatross on their roster for the next three seasons. That was the outlay (and cap hit) accorded unrestricted free agent Petr Mrazek by… Read More

Making Peace With The Irishman

TORONTO (Nov. 24) — Tuesday marked seven years since Hall–of–Fame coach Pat Quinn died (Nov. 23, 2014) of a liver ailment. Quinn coached and managed the Toronto Maple Leafs from 1998–99 to 2005–06, which coincided with my years covering the… Read More

Travel Tales To Make You Laugh

TORONTO (Nov. 21) — As any hockey fan in this city will attest, the game is often dealt with in life–and–death terms, particularly when the Maple Leafs lapse into a slump. If, however, you’ve had the privilege of traveling with… Read More

Recalling Toronto’s Hot Streaks

TORONTO (Nov. 20) — Though the Stanley Cup playoffs are many months and weeks in the distance, the Toronto Maple Leafs could be performing better, right now, than at any time since the franchise–record 16–game, regular–season unbeaten streak of Nov.… Read More

Campbell’s Record Is Astonishing

TORONTO (Nov. 17) — Though it is always futile to compare eras in the National Hockey League, Jack Campbell has moved into unparalleled company among the best modern–era goalies for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Since replacing Frederik Andersen as the… Read More

The “Feel Good” Streaks of Autumn

TORONTO (Nov. 15) — Oh, if November were only April for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Sporting a tidy 8–1–0 record in their past nine starts, the Leafs are winning games early… tying games late… prevailing in overtime with first, second… Read More
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