Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Celtics Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 28

Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Celtics Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 28

The Toronto Raptors have already taken on the Boston Celtics twice in the 2021-22 season, and both meetings have resulted in one side getting blown out. Despite Toronto’s poor West Coast trip, the latest Raptors odds are suggesting that they could be in for a victory in this contest. The first time these two teams […]
Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Celtics Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 28 – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors Quarter-Season Awards: Which players stood out?

Toronto Raptors Quarter-Season Awards: Which players stood out?

Hard to believe we’re already 20 games into the 2021-22 NBA season. Even harder to believe that Fred VanVleet, Scottie Barnes, and this Toronto Raptors team have already experienced such a vast array of successes, failures, and momentum changes. The Raptors went from a playoff afterthought to one of the hottest teams in the league […]
Toronto Raptors Quarter-Season Awards: Which players stood out? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Avishai Sol / Raptors HQ

News and Notes: The Leafs sign an EBUG, Holl out Liljegren in, Mrazek won’t be out long-term

So the 2021-22 season is not even a week old yet and the Leafs are already in full chaos mode with all of the news circulating this morning in regards to the lineup and the status of some injured players.
We begin with the biggest story of them all, which is the Leafs being short on cash and resorting to unique methods to get around that problem.

The #leafs don’t have the cap space to call up a goaltender to take Petr Mrazek’s spot behind Jack Campbell tonight. They will likely sign U of T goalie Alex Bishop to an amateur tryout to back up Campbell.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) October 16, 2021

What, David Ayres was not available?
Jokes aside, this must be huge for Alex Bishop who has posted decent numbers during his time in the QMJHL and USports. He is in his senior year at the University of Toronto so this will surely be a moment he will never forget. He will most likely sit on the bench for the entire game, but it wouldn’t shock me if Sheldon Keefe were to do him a solid and let him play the final few minutes depending on how things go …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

The NHL releases some key dates for next season/summer

Tonight is the second game of the preseason, and already the NHL is dumping some trade deadline, draft, and free agency news on us…

Key dates from the NHL’s 2021-22 calendar:
March 21: Trade deadlineMay 2: First day of Stanley Cup PlayoffsJune 30: Last possible day of Stanley Cup PlayoffsJuly 1: First buyout period opensJuly 7-8: NHL draftJuly 12: First buyout period endsJuly 13: Free agency opens
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) September 27, 2021

Those are certainly some important dates to remember, and even with the Olympic break the NHL seems to be moving up their schedule a couple of weeks compared to last season.
The March 21st trade deadline comes just one week (three games) after the Leafs outdoor game in Hamilton against the Sabres, and mercifully falls in the middle of three days off for the Leafs meaning plenty of time to make trades without worrying about players not being available for their next game and we might not see players held out for precautionary reasons. I’m the Leafs front office appreciates this scheduling.
The Leafs play 20 games after the trade deadline this season, so renting a player doesn’t seem like the colossal waste of resources like it’s been the past two seasons. Still, …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

3 Toronto Maple Leafs that need to bounce back next season

The 2021-22 NHL season is already almost here, and for Toronto Maple Leafs fans, they don’t know whether to be excited about yet another season or to be worried that another season is upon us and we might see the same movie for the sixth year in a row. Despite the Maple Leafs collapsing in the first round yet again, it was definitely a regular season to be proud of, but them losing in the first round again does make their regular season meaningless at this point.
However, it was a season filled with great moments and a season filled with some stressful  moments, and for some players, in particular, they will be looking to bounce back next season after having not the strongest of seasons during the 2020-21 campaign. These three individuals all have specific skills that will allow them to bounce back, it’s just a matter of if they can apply it next season and show us they are capable of bouncing back to help lead this team to greater things.
 
1. Justin Holl – 29 years old – RD
2020-21 stats – 55 GP – 2 G – 18 A – 20 PTS – 21:04 TOI
Contract – $2M x 3 years – signed through the 2022-23 season
This pick shouldn’t …

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Author: Joseph Zita / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Trevor Gleeson is the perfect Sergio Scariolo replacement

Toronto Raptors: Trevor Gleeson is the perfect Sergio Scariolo replacement

The Toronto Raptors were already dealing with enough tough decisions this offseason, as the uncertainty surrounding Masai Ujiri, Kyle Lowry, and the No. 4 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft was a lot to swallow for Nick Nurse. Losing Sergio Scariolo was another kick in the head, but Nurse didn’t leave the post vacant for […]
Toronto Raptors: Trevor Gleeson is the perfect Sergio Scariolo replacement – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

More Injuries! Julian Merryweather to the 10-day IL, Ross Stripling scratched with forearm tightness

The Blue Jays are already without, among others, George Springer, Teoscar Hernandez, Nate Pearson, and the team was dealt another couple of blows on Wednesday morning.

Julian Merryweather is going on the 10-day Injured List with a left oblique strain. He left last night’s game after throwing just a few pitches with what the team called a hip issue. This is obviously really, really unfortunate as Merryweather has been excellent and Toronto’s bullpen is already without Tyler Chatwood. This leaves either Rafael Dolis or Jordan Romano as the closer.
Coming up in Merryweather’s place will be Anthony Castro, who the team claimed off waivers from the Detroit Tigers back in December. Castro has just one inning at the big-league level but pitched fairly well for the team in spring training and was in the mix to crack the team right up until the end. Castro tossed nine-and-one-third Grapefruit innings and struck out 15 batters.
David Phelps is listed as day-to-day after getting drilled by a liner last night. He won’t go on the Injured List but also won’t be available tonight.
And then there’s Ross Stripling, who was supposed to start today, but won’t …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Masai Ujiri connection could help Gorgui Dieng land with Raptors over Knicks

Toronto Raptors: Masai Ujiri connection could help Gorgui Dieng land with Raptors over Knicks

Even though the Toronto Raptors already traded Norman Powell away at the trade deadline, they are by no means done adding pieces due to the fact they could still make the postseason tournament, which could help Masai Ujiri try to land former Memphis Grizzlies center Gorgui Dieng. Due to the frontcourt crunch in Memphis, Dieng, […]
Toronto Raptors: Masai Ujiri connection could help Gorgui Dieng land with Raptors over Knicks – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Staturday Weekly Column #8: Corsi Report Cards!

As the NHL season quickly progresses, we find ourselves already at game #12 tonight for the Maple Leafs, and we are just crossing the precipice of having enough data to semi-accurately predict future results, at least when it comes to the basic counting stats.
Research has shown that Corsi can predict the win % of teams, using even a pretty small sample such as 20 games played. The key point from the linked article from JLikens in the early-ish days of blogging about shot attempt analysis (2011) is the following two points:

Corsi Tied is the best predictor of how a team will perform over the remainder of its schedule, regardless of the point in the schedule at which the calculation occurs.
Corsi Tied is only marginally more predictive of future success than goal ratio or winning percentage when looking at samples of 60 games or more.

So, in the early parts of the season like right now, Corsi is at it’s most valuable in terms of predictivity relative to more basic metrics like Win % or goal differential.
The above article talks about “Corsi Tied”, which was an early, simple way of eliminating what we call “score effects”. Score effects are basically: as the …

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Author: Ryan Hobart / The Leafs Nation

Major League Baseball is thinking about delaying the start of the 2021 season to May

If you’re already looking forward to February and have pitchers and catchers report written down on your calendar, I’ve got bad news for you.

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, Major League Baseball is considering pushing the start of the 2021 season back to May because it would give the league more time to get players and personnel vaccinated.
Apparently, those on MLB’s side would rather push things back and have a shorter (like 140-game) season if it means everyone is vaccinated and fans are more likely to be able to attend games in person rather than going forward with a normal 162-game schedule as planned. On the other side, the Players’ Association believes that a full season can be executed as normal even without a vaccine so long as protocols are in place.
“I don’t see any way spring training starts in February,” one anonymous executive told USA Today. “Zero chance of that. I don’t care if we play 140 games, 120 games or 80 games, we have to make sure everyone is safe to do this right.’’
I generally tend to lean pro-player when it comes to issues between MLB and the PA, but, in this …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation