Leafs have the cap space to address roster holes but not to improve significantly

It’s the annual tradition of being in salary cap hell. We make light of it, largely because all it takes it one trade to seemingly rid yourself of it, or one expansion draft claim (read: Kerfoot) away from a bit more flexibility existing as well. Still, that doesn’t change that the Leafs have about $12.5M available to address four forward positions, one defense position, one goaltender position, and any reserve players they wish to put on their roster this year. That’s 85% of their cap space spent on the lineup so far, and when you consider that the top four defense, starting goaltender, and four of the top six forwards are accounted for in that, it doesn’t look terrible. When you consider that the Leafs could potentially use a course correction, that doesn’t seem like a lot of money to do something significant.
First, here’s the roster as it exists today…

LW
C
RW
LD
RD
G
Reserve

Matthews
Marner
Rielly
Brodie
Campbell

Tavares
Nylander
Muzzin
Holl

Engvall
Kerfoot
Mikheyev
Sandin

Spezza

So I’m avoiding all assumptions. No attempt to determine if Kerfoot, Engvall, Dermott, Holl, or a wild card are off to Seattle. …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Nets and 76ers struggles proves Toronto Raptors shouldn’t rebuild just yet

Nets and 76ers struggles proves Toronto Raptors shouldn’t rebuild just yet

The Toronto Raptors have the misfortune of being lumped in what is arguably the best division in the entire NBA. The Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers rule the roost, the upstart Knicks are far ahead of schedule, and despite some moving and shaking, the Celtics have a strong enough infrastructure to keep the wins coming […]
Nets and 76ers struggles proves Toronto Raptors shouldn’t rebuild just yet – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Looking back at Ross Atkins’ history as a buyer at the trade deadline

Death, taxes, and good teams being buyers.

Those are the three things guaranteed in life. The Blue Jays since their World Series wins in 1992 and 1993, to put it mildly, have not been good. However, the Blue Jays have had three playoff appearances in the past six seasons with another more potentially on the way. This young Blue Jays team is just a few steps away from being a contender, barring a starting pitcher and a power-hitting third baseman.
While speculating which moves they will make is fun, this blog will discuss how Ross Atkins and Mark Shapiro handle trade deadlines in buyer situations. This current management has made the playoffs twice since taking the reins in late 2015.

2016
2016 was a weird year, not just for a newly graduated high schooler like myself, but also for this Blue Jays team. While he left in the off-season, the makeup of the 2016 Blue Jays team belonged to Alex Anthopoulos. This isn’t to say that Atkins and Shapiro hadn’t brought in players. An important move before the 2016 season came in the form of J.A Happ, a somewhat surprisingly good replacement for the departing David Price. This is when I and maybe a …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Frederik Andersen makes 12 saves on 14 shots in Marlies debut

Frederik Andersen makes 12 saves on 14 shots in Marlies debut

After being out since March 19th due to an injury, Frederik Andersen makes his return to the ice in a Toronto Marlies jersey. It was his first AHL game since January 12, 2014 with the Norfolk Admirals, which was the Anaheim Ducks AHL team at the time.
The start for Andersen was a little tough. Toronto gave away the puck, which lead to a breakaway goal from Jeff Malott.

Jeff Malott beats Frederik Andersen.#Marlies down 1-0. pic.twitter.com/gaS2ewsvGN
— Nick Barden (@nickbarden) May 6, 2021

Then, 1:42 later, Ty Pelton-Byce makes a nice move to get around Filip Král and scores.

Ty Pelton-Byce scores the second goal for Manitoba.#Marlies down 2-0 with five shots against. pic.twitter.com/8BTMDrWUNX
— Nick Barden (@nickbarden) May 6, 2021

Andersen allowed two goals on five shots in the first half of the period. He would then make three more saves to finish off the first.
He would then face a few more shots through the first half of the second period, making every save.

Better sequence for Andersen here as he makes a couple of decent stops: pic.twitter.com/JGh9Z1CQLP
— Nick Richard (@_NickRichard) May 6, 2021

Andersen finished off the afternoon with 12 saves on 14 shots.
What’ …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Auston Matthews has already quickly become the best goal scorer in the league

After being drafted first overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs back in the 2016 NHL Draft, Auston Matthews has done more than just live to the hype of being the first overall selection in that draft, he’s put his name in the conversation as arguably a top-three player in the NHL today in some peoples eyes. If not top-three, then he’s more than certainly a top-five player in the NHL today in most people’s opinions with how this season has gone and especially his season last year too.
Matthews stepped onto the scene in the NHL right away and with that, he made a massive impact scoring four goals in his NHL debut against the Ottawa Senators as a 19-year-old who just turned 19 not even a month ago at the time. It was in that game, that first game of the 2016-17 regular season that all of Leafs Nation knew that Auston Matthews was a special player and that he was going to be dominating the league very, very soon.
Well fast forward to this season, his fifth year in the NHL, Auston Matthews has quickly become the league’s best goal scorer, yes you read that right. …

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Author: Joseph Zita / The Leafs Nation

It looks like Reese McGuire will be back with the Blue Jays

After being designed for assignment and clearing waivers, it looks like Reese McGuire will be joining the Blue Jays again.

According to Ben Wagner, given the severity of Alejandro Kirk’s injury (he’s expected to be out for up to six weeks), the Blue Jays are planning to activate McGuire. But since he isn’t at the Alternate Training Site, he has to pass COVID protocols before he can join the team.
We don’t yet know if the plan is for McGuire to be added to the roster to play in tandem with Danny Jansen or if they’re going to put him on the Taxi Squad. If it’s the former, he needs to be added to the 40-man roster again, but if it’s the latter, he doesn’t need to be rostered.
I would imagine the plan is to put him back on the active roster because the Blue Jays likely don’t want a prospect in Riley Adams sitting around on the bench when he could be getting playing time in Triple-A. If that’s the case, somebody will either need to be DFA’d or moved to the 60-day Injured List.
Another thing …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

It was 3-1. Toronto Maple Leafs complete late comeback over Edmonton Oilers

So this is what it’s like being on the other side of a late game collapse against a divisional rival.
After a night spent out-chancing the Edmonton Oilers, and ringing more posts than an Amazon driver rings doorbells, the Toronto Maple Leafs erased a 3-1 deficit with under eight minutes remaining in the game to win 4-3 in overtime.
After a quiet first period that saw no goals or penalties, Pierre Engvall opened the scoring in the second period by not punching in a goal. Initially it was ruled no goal due to a hand pass, but the replay showed that despite reaching out, Engvall’s glove never made contact with the puck.

PIERRE ENGVALL
Off Mike Smith’s head! pic.twitter.com/hk28cpwaN5
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) March 28, 2021

The next period and a half was spent watching McDavid and Draisaitl do things that only McDavid and Draisaitl can do (which may or may not include putting up multiple points in a loss). With ex-Leaf Tyson Barrie extending the Oilers lead to two, it seemed like Toronto’s grasp on the North Division lead was about to further slip.
Instead, John Tavares decided to show why he’s the Captain and …

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Author: Filipe Dimas / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Latest report says Kyle Lowry is not getting traded this season

Toronto Raptors: Latest report says Kyle Lowry is not getting traded this season

The Toronto Raptors were being bombarded with Kyle Lowry trade rumors even when they were winning this season, and their recent slide, which has helped them lose six straight games and eight of their last nine, has only amplified matters. Lowry is still one of the game’s best point guards on both ends of the […]
Toronto Raptors: Latest report says Kyle Lowry is not getting traded this season – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Leafs add some offensive depth by trading for Alex Galchenyuk

So, after Galchenyuk’s recent interesting week of being on traded to Carolina, instantly being put on waivers, going unclaimed, and assigned to Chicago of the AHL, he’s now found a new home.

We’ve acquired Alex Galchenyuk from Carolina in exchange for Egor Korshkov and David Warsofsky. #LeafsForever
Details: https://t.co/SZX639nsNG pic.twitter.com/P8uMQ5wDQ1
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 15, 2021

Yep, that’s right, the Leafs added Galchenyuk, a guy they could have claimed off waivers for free in exchange for Egor “Not DeBrincat” Korshkov, and David Wars of Sky, who was the throw-in AHLer in the Kapanen trade.
In case you’re wondering why they traded for Galchenyuk instead of claiming him off waivers, it comes down to the fact that Galchenyuk is more valuable to the Leafs when they can start him out in the Marlies, or have him take up residency on the taxi squad for the next month without requiring waivers than having to force him into the roster and hoping he pans out every night.
Additionally, it frees the Leafs from a couple of standard players contracts in the process, which isn’t a bad thing.
We can probably …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Raptors depth chart: Best lineup for 2020-21 playoff push

Raptors depth chart: Best lineup for 2020-21 playoff push

The Toronto Raptors being anywhere close to the postseason has to be one of the most unlikely stories of the first third of the 2020-21 NBA season, as the Raptors started off the season winning just two of their first 10 games, showing exactly how much this team missed Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka in […]
Raptors depth chart: Best lineup for 2020-21 playoff push – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ