Could Raptors be eyeing big trade-up after meeting top prospects?

Could Raptors be eyeing big trade-up after meeting top prospects?

The Toronto Raptors might find it tougher to build through the draft in 2022 than in most seasons, as they only have one second-round selection in the upcoming festivities. That doesn’t mean that Masai Ujiri will throw up his hands and stick at No. 33 overall.  Toronto appears to be eschewing the usual collection of […]
Could Raptors be eyeing big trade-up after meeting top prospects? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Leaflets: Giordano signing is a great start, defensive offer sheets, and what’s next for Simmonds

It’s been a while since I’ve done a Leaflets post so rather than just simply doing one, I’ve decided to commit to this as a regular Monday thing going forward. Consider Leaflets a small dose of my correct bad opinions for you to get mad at. It seemed like it was going to be a quiet long weekend, but much to delight of everyone, Kyle Dubas showed he was hard at work getting a former Norris Trophy winner back at a bargain price, so let’s start there.
The Giordano signing is impossible to hate
I immediately regret that assessment, as there is a pocket of Leafs fans outraged over Jason Spezza being around at all despite making league minimum and still putting together stretches of productive hockey. I am confident someone while emerge to teach us why Mark Giordano at two years for $800k AAV is bad, but for now let’s focus on all the reasons it’s good including when we last saw Mark Giordano a few weeks ago he still seemed like a perfectly capable middle pairing, or stellar bottom pairing option for the blueline.
So first off, this is a player at the end of his career signaling to his teammates that he believes the Leafs provide him the best opportunity …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

3 contenders who could lure Thad Young away from Raptors return

3 contenders who could lure Thad Young away from Raptors return

The Toronto Raptors made a very risky maneuver when they gave up a first-round pick for a 33-year-old player having his worst season in Thad Young. It took all of a few weeks for the Raptors to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they got one over on the San Antonio Spurs. Young […]
3 contenders who could lure Thad Young away from Raptors return – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

5 Toronto Marlies that failed to meet expectations this season

The 2021/22 Toronto Marlies season was a disappointing one as the franchise missed the playoffs for the first time in a decade following a heartbreaking loss on the last day of the regular season.
Last week, I looked at the positive side of the season and identified five players that exceeded expectations for the year. You can check that one out here.
Today, though, we’re looking at the other side of things. As the Marlies missed the playoffs, there were players that failed to meet expectations and whose underwhelming performance partially contributed to the early end of the season.
Mikhail Abramov
Making the jump from the junior hockey level to the professional level is a huge step in a player’s career. Sometimes it goes smoothly, other times there is a bigger learning curve than anticipated.
For Mikhail Abramov, his season was much more of the latter. Coming into the season after winning the QMJHL championship in his final year of junior hockey, Abramov was expected to lock down a top nine position down the middle of the ice and provide a spark of offence for the Marlies.
While Abramov did remain in the top nine for a vast majority of the season, it was more so due to the Marlies’ lack of centres when the likes of Adam Brooks, Kirill Semyonov, and Michael Amadio all left the organization early in the season.
Finishing the year with seven goals and 28 points in 66 …

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Author: Kyle Cushman / The Leafs Nation

NBA Mock Draft has Raptors making very risky second-round pick

NBA Mock Draft has Raptors making very risky second-round pick

The Toronto Raptors are in possession of the No. 33 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, allowing Masai Ujiri to restock the cupboards with another premium athlete. The NBA Mock Draft wizards seem to believe that Ujiri will roll the dice again on a toolsy prospect. With the selection of Scottie Barnes No. 4 overall […]
NBA Mock Draft has Raptors making very risky second-round pick – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

BJN Radio – Ep. 78: The 2016 team comparison, Joey Votto’s successful finale in Toronto, and more!

It was another series win that left a sour aftertaste.

As they did with Seattle, the Blue Jays took the first two games against a weak opponent and then came up short with a chance to pull off a sweep.
In the post-Reds series episode of BJN Radio, we gave praise to Hyun Hin Ryu for another good start, questioned whether it was right for Charlie Montoyo to not give Alek Manoah the ninth inning, and looked at Bo Bichette’s low-key hot streak in the month of May. We also talked about the handful of guys who aren’t hitting and wondered how long such cold streaks can possibly continue.
We also talked about Joey Votto playing likely his last game in Toronto, barring a trade, and talked about whether we root for Canadian players when they go up against the Blue Jays.
You can listen to the episode here…

POINTSBET IS LIVE IN ONTARIO

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Raptors showing interest in Canadian high schooler Leonard Miller

Raptors showing interest in Canadian high schooler Leonard Miller

The Toronto Raptors have not been one to shy away from making an unpopular or unusual draft selection if the right player falls into their laps. Leonard Miller is not going to be a player that everyone falls in love with, but he has all the traits that Toronto loves to covet in the draft. Miller […]
Raptors showing interest in Canadian high schooler Leonard Miller – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Mark Giordano agrees to a two-year extension with the Leafs

One-third of the Leafs’ major acquisitions at the 2022 Trade deadline will be remaining in Hog Town for the foreseeable future.

We’ve signed defenceman Mark Giordano to a two-year contract extension. #LeafsForever
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) May 22, 2022

The Leafs reported that Mark Giordano agreed to a two-year extension that carries an AAV of $800K.
Despite being in the twilight of his career, Giordano remains an effective defenceman putting up fairly consistent scoring numbers over the past half-decade and a steady presence on the backend. He is just three seasons removed from capturing his first career Norris Trophy after all.
He was taken by the Kraken in the 2021 Expansion Draft after spending the first 15 years of his career with the Flames. This past season saw him split time with Seattle and Toronto where he combined to score eight goals, 27 assists, and 35 points in 75 games played.
Giordano was acquired along with Colin Blackwell a day before the deadline in exchange for two second-round picks and a third-round pick.
More from TheLeafsNation.com
The best thing for John Tavares might be to play wing, but that opens up a big hole at center by Jon Steitzer
Maple Leafs and Kyle Dubas ‘need’ Marlies prospects to compete for NHL roster spots next season by Nick Barden
Maple Leafs would be ill-advised to make drastic changes despite yet another first-round exit by Kyle Cushman
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PointsBet Canada has officially launched in Ontario! Get more details right here! …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

Why Nick Robertson is deserving of an extended look with the Maple Leafs this fall

The thing that Nick Robertson needs most is a full-time NHL gig and I think he’ll get that with the Maple Leafs next season.
After the 20-year-old returned from a four-month layoff due to injury, there was a different look to his game. Robertson seemed to be as confident as ever at a time when it just didn’t seem possible. Coming off an injury like a broken leg, there’s usually a period where a player is getting used to everything again.
Not Robertson, though.
The work that he and the Maple Leafs’ return-to-play staff did together allowed for Robertson to come back to the Marlies as good as ever. The 20-year-old averaged a point-per-game in his final 26 games of the season.
It wasn’t just the points that made Robertson stand out more this time around in the AHL. He seemed more confident with and without the puck, not forcing plays to come to him, but getting in better spots for better looks.
It also seemed like the 20-year-old got stronger on the puck while he was nursing his broken leg.
Robertson wasn’t getting pus …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Debating “Leafs should run it back” vs. “It’s time for a change”

This debate isn’t going to go away. It won’t go away this offseason, and it’s likely to run in future offseasons as well, but given the strong regular season and how close the Leafs came against the Lightning, there is strong support for running it back. At the same time, it’s been six years with this core, and while they’ve been improving in most years (save for the two COVID shortened ones) there are limits to the number of improvements a team can make when you have $48M committed to 5 players or $58.6M to 7 players if you want to include Muzzin and Brodie in this equation too. It seems that something has to give in that group of seven if the Leafs want to try to upgrade.
Normally when we do these roundtables, I feel like we run the risk of a lot of groupthink, but even the responses that chose the middle ground offer some different takes we don’t normally see. That’s probably a sign that this debate is going eventually lead to a Leafs fan Civil War. For now, here are the responses to Should the Leafs “run it b …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation