Are You Watching (As Before)?

TORONTO (Mar. 28) — Most would agree, I’ll assume, that change should be progressive; that if you alter anything in life which works, it should begin to work even better. Though the first intermission of Hockey Night In Canada is… Read More

Goalie Issue All On Leafs Management

TORONTO (Mar. 21) — My ol’ friend, Rosie DiManno, has never needed an epiphany to write a column. About news, human–interest or sports. The headline, which she didn’t write, to her Sunday Leafs story in the Toronto Star (as below)… Read More

Orr Destroyed By “Loonies”

TORONTO (Mar. 20) — Today is Bobby Orr’s 73rd birthday. For the first time in his long public life, hockey’s greatest all–time player is affiliated with more than just the game… and his revolutionary role in it. Since Oct. 30… Read More

Would The Leafs “Rent” Taylor Hall?

TORONTO (Mar. 18) — If, as he implied on Tuesday, Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas is willing to part with a top prospect, would “renting” Taylor Hall from the Buffalo Sabres be a sensible move? Without hesitation, my answer… Read More

Dubas Serves Up a Pant–load

“If Fred has shown us anything in the 4½ seasons he has been with us, it’s that he has a tremendous ability to gather himself when he may not be playing to the standard that he sets for himself. I Read More

Leafs Have To Trade Andersen

TORONTO (Mar. 16) — It’s odd, all this chatter in Leafs land about goaltending. According to flag–wavers in the mainstream Toronto media, this was not supposed to be an issue. The sub–par performance by Frederik Andersen in the abbreviated regular… Read More

Bob Cole Missing the Booth

TORONTO (Mar. 15) — He had to run. God’s voice of hockey here in Canada for two generations. Understandably, of course. At 87 years of age, if offered a COVID–19 vaccine, you go for it. Quickly. “How are you, Howard?”… Read More

When The Fan Started To Blow

TORONTO (Mar. 14) — Yes, in the end, it was a budget crunch. Emanating from the economic recession of 2008. But, wow, memories of The FAN–590 changing forever — in a relatively brief span — are still raw. While writing,… Read More

That Golden Day In Vancouver

TORONTO (Mar. 9) — This story and this blog is about the man who provides the soundtrack of sports on television in Canada. You know, instantly, that I’m referring to Chris Cuthbert; or C.C. as those in the industry call… Read More

Healy: “Leafs Look Legit, But…”

TORONTO (Mar. 6) — With the exception, perhaps, of Harry Neale, he was the most–complete and informative analyst in the history of hockey on television. Certainly, here in Canada, though many good voices have resided south of the border (John… Read More

Occasionally, This Happens

TORONTO (Mar. 3) — Amid the gloom and despair in the Canadian sports media industry, there’s been a triumphant story: the return of Mike Wilner. Increasingly a staple, from 2014 to 2020, on radio broadcasts of the Toronto Blue Jays,… Read More

The Travail of Stormin’ Norm

TORONTO (Mar. 1) — Norm Rumack remembers the unmistakable feeling of doom. It was June 23, 2009. Early morning on a Tuesday. The night before, while en route to a promotional appearance near Toronto Pearson Airport, he’d gotten an email… Read More

The Numbers Are Crazy

TORONTO (Feb. 28) — If the old saying “the numbers don’t lie” relates to the Toronto Maple Leafs, 2021 could be quite a year for the franchise with the longest Stanley Cup drought. The figures atop the National Hockey League’s… Read More

Another Rogers Sh** Show

TORONTO (Feb. 26) — For years, we have known that Canada’s two communication leviathans, Bell and Rogers, compete as cable, Internet and sports media providers. They copulate only as 75 percent co–squires of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment… and only… Read More

It’s Still A Mystery to the Bobcat

TORONTO (Feb. 20) — I worked in radio with Bob McCown for the better part of a quarter–century. And, though we were never buddy–buddy, it wasn’t unusual for us to chat until we had nothing left to say. Particularly in… Read More

Becoming a Hockey Fanatic

TORONTO (Feb. 18) — How does it happen? What converts a fundamentally normal human being into a seething blob of despair when the Toronto Maple Leafs spit up a 5–2, third–period lead against the Ottawa Senators? How does such an… Read More

Legends From Above

TORONTO (Feb. 15) — It was Apr. 27, 2006 and I felt sorrowful. While in my hotel room at Le Centre Sheraton in Montreal, covering Games 3 and 4 of the Canadiens–Carolina playoff series for The FAN–590, I called Jim… Read More

Bell Negotiators To Be Busy

TORONTO (Feb. 13) — It should come as no surprise that the people sacrificed in the Bell Media bloodletting this week want the blood of their employers. Having lived through a not–for–cause termination by Rogers nearly a decade ago, I… Read More
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