100% correct Leafs predictions for the New Year

So long 2020. You sucked. Kinda on a global scale, but of course from a Leafs standpoint too. Whether it was losing to Columbus in the play-in round, when Toronto was the host city or losing to an emergency backup goaltender who is on your own payroll, the Leafs managed to remind us that this franchise has a unique history in the NHL and some things seemingly can only happen to the Leafs.
Fast forward to 2021 and I think there’s some renewed optimism of most of The Leafs Nation contributors and despite what history has shown us, there is a feeling that 2021 could be a really special year, but this time special in a good way. Though, really whatever happens on the ice I think I can deal with it as long as someone pumps me full of COVID vaccine and I can sit around around an airport Chili’s pounding cold ones on a flight to some place warm again without the fear of feeling like Patrick Dempsey in Outbreak.
We’ll start by wishing you all a happy and healthy 2021, and now onto the Leafs predictions…
Brendan Mori
Auston Matthews scores 40 in 56 (is this bold enough?)
Matthews was …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Key takeaways from the Toronto Raptors loss against the Pelicans

Key takeaways from the Toronto Raptors loss against the Pelicans

The struggles from 2020 carry on for the Toronto Raptors, as they suffer another loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. The Toronto Raptors are unable to win back-to-back games as they drop to 1-4 on the season after losing to the New Orleans Pelicans. Another slow second half derailed the Raptors from pulling away and […]
Key takeaways from the Toronto Raptors loss against the Pelicans – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Nickeem Khan / Raptors HQ

Leafs by the Numbers: Martin Marincin

2020 is over. Finally.
It felt like everything bad that could possibly happen last year, did. Hockey was postponed due to Covid-19, everyone was asked to stay in their houses to slow the spread and when we finally had a taste of freedom — the second wave came and now we’re back in lockdown.
Although most of the year was horrible, there was some good that came out of it. That’s also why I’m writing this article for you today.

Martin Marincin with the tie breaking goal for #LeafsForever! pic.twitter.com/AeKKb5Gwgm
— SiriusXM NHL Network Radio (@SiriusXMNHL) March 1, 2020

This was probably the highlight of my year. If you don’t know the story, I promise I’ll explain it quick. After this goal, I tweeted “500 RT’s and I’ll buy a Martin Marincin jersey” and after 20 minutes, I got well over 500 retweets and the next day I bought the jersey.
Yes, I am an owner of a Toronto Maple Leafs Marincin jersey.
Martin Marincin’s number is 282.50.
No, it’s not the number of games he’s played, plus his point total put together. This is the total that was rung up at the cash register …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Stories of the Year: COVID-19 and the NHL

As we finally say goodbye to 2020, we’ll stop one last time to reflect on how COVID-19 has impacted the NHL. Of course, the NHL portion of the impact of the disease is so much more trivial than the devastation of that we’ve seen on a global level. The deaths, the separation of families, the exhaustion of health care systems, the rise of conspiracy loons and anti-maskers, and the financial impact that has also taken a toll on so many households. In short, the hockey part seems incredibly small, but in the hockey world, COVID was still a dominant storyline that needs to be discussed.
The Initial Shutdown
Like so many things with the NHL, the league was hesitant to shutdown first. Jurisdictions like San Jose were already forbidding games in front of audiences, and it wasn’t until the NBA committed to shutting down that the NHL realized it was time to follow suit. Given that by the end of that weekend, the entire world and all non-essential businesses followed suit, it wasn’t a particularly brave decision, and from the beginning, the NHL began to sell a bill of goods about the NHL’s return.
Amazingly enough, …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Stories of the year: The rise of the Hockey Diversity Alliance and BLM’s impact on the NHL

June 8th, 2020 marked the formation of the Hockey Diversity Alliance. Spearheaded by an executive committee of seven current and former NHL players with Akim Aliu and Evander Kane at the forefront. It is the HDA’s mission to eradicate racism and intolerance in hockey. It will be a long and difficult process, but they are well on their way. 
 
Since their formation they have shown that meaningful change in hockey is the most important to them.

Let’s create sustainable change on every level within hockey.
We will educate and encourage accountability from our leagues and leaders. At the grassroots level, we will work to ensure hockey is accessible to anyone who loves the game.#ISupportHDA | https://t.co/zBFO5GjauA pic.twitter.com/rH2h8QImey
— Hockey Diversity Alliance (@TheOfficialHDA) August 11, 2020

 
Access and opportunity is just one place to begin.

Former Canadian NHL hockey player Akim Aliu helped to establish a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Colour) hockey team that played in a recent tournament in Etobicoke. Read more: https://t.co/i1YLEeM8tS pic.twitter.com/yl6kPQBFRz
— CBC Toronto (@CBCToronto) September 15, 2020

 
Then the focus moves to the opposite end of the spectrum where the onus falls …

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Author: Marsha Joseph / The Leafs Nation

Apparently the Blue Jays are one of the teams who has offered Ha-Seong Kim a multi-year contract

If we’re going to get a last-minute signing before 2020 comes to a close, it’s more than likely going to be Ha-Seong Kim.

Kim, a star from the Korean Baseball Organization, was officially posted by the Kiwoom Heroes back in early-December. Given the 30-day window for contract negotiations expires on Jan. 1, Kim will soon have to come to terms with a Major League club if he wants to make the trek overseas for the 2021 season.
According to Daniel Kim, ESPN’s KBO insider, there are multiple teams who have offered Kim a contract, and the Blue Jays are apparently one of them…

Sources – #BlueJays are one of the teams that offered multi-year contract to Ha-seong Kim. Said to be 5 years or more. Kim’s posting ends on Jan 1. #mlb #kbo pic.twitter.com/iVZDTB9BPk
— Daniel Kim 대니얼 김 (@DanielKimW) December 28, 2020

Along with the Blue Jays, we’ve heard that the Mets (of course), Rangers, Red Sox, Cardinals, and Padres are interested in signing Kim.
I wrote about Kim a few months ago when his name first surfaced on the international free-agent market as a possibility for the Blue Jays. I thought he made quite a bit of sense because …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: A Christmas Wishlist of what needs to be done in 2021

Toronto Raptors: A Christmas Wishlist of what needs to be done in 2021

2020 has been a rough year for everyone, but through it all the Toronto Raptors have consistently performed well. From being second place in the Eastern Conference last season to reaching the semifinals in the playoffs last season with the recent departures of Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green. Although it doesn’t feel as Christmas day […]
Toronto Raptors: A Christmas Wishlist of what needs to be done in 2021 – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Ben Zelniker / Raptors HQ

Hey Toronto Raptors, bring back our boy Rondae Hollis-Jefferson

Hey Toronto Raptors, bring back our boy Rondae Hollis-Jefferson

The Toronto Raptors 2020 fan favourite was recently released by the Minnesota Timberwolves. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was recently released by the Minnesota Timberwolves in a surprising move. Hollis-Jefferson had some fairly impressive pre-season performances including a 17-point outing against the Memphis Grizzlies. Nonetheless, the Timberwolves made the questionable decision to release the veteran swingman. The Toronto Raptors […]
Hey Toronto Raptors, bring back our boy Rondae Hollis-Jefferson – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jack Long / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors: Expectations for Raptors in 2020/21 season

Toronto Raptors: Expectations for Raptors in 2020/21 season

The NBA off-season for 2020 has almost run its course, and the Toronto Raptors appear weaker as a roster from the event. The 2020/21 season maybe the Raptors’ worst since 34 wins in 2012/13. Perhaps the COVID-19 pandemics’ economic effects have forced the Toronto Raptors‘ ownership group to consider limiting their financial commitments beyond 2021. […]
Toronto Raptors: Expectations for Raptors in 2020/21 season – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jason Mills / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors: After the draft Raptors need frontcourt players

Toronto Raptors: After the draft Raptors need frontcourt players

The 2020 NBA Draft is over, and the Toronto Raptors have some major decisions to make to fill out their roster. The major question is Fred VanVleet truly a priority, or is finding frontcourt players? Officially, November 20th, 2020 is the date that NBA general managers, including Bobby Webster of the Toronto Raptors, can begin […]
Toronto Raptors: After the draft Raptors need frontcourt players – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jason Mills / Raptors HQ