3 keys for the Raptors in order to pull off insane 76ers upset

3 keys for the Raptors in order to pull off insane 76ers upset

The Toronto Raptors staved off elimination for at least one more game when they pulled off a home victory against the Philadelphia 76ers with their backs against the wall. In order to win this series and become the first playoff team to advance after being down 3-0, Toronto will need to win two more games […]
3 keys for the Raptors in order to pull off insane 76ers upset – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Lockout update! Digging into MLB’s first proposal, why the Players’ Association declined, and what’s next

It isn’t much, but, at the very least, we have something to talk about.

On Thursday, Major League Baseball presented its first labour-related proposal to the Players’ Association since the beginning of the lockout, ending what had been a 43-day stalemate.
Unfortunately (and, well, unsurprisingly) it was a very one-sided offer, one that Jeff Passan of ESPN said “did little to encourage the players and heightened the likelihood of spring training being postponed.” The meeting, which reportedly took place over the span of one hour, consisted of MLB presenting its proposal and the players agreeing to present an official counter-proposal at an unspecified time in the future.
Here’s a quick run-down of what the league presented in its offer…
A lottery for the top pick in the draft. The worst three teams are in the lottery and the winner gets the top draft pick. Also, to address tanking, teams wouldn’t be allowed in the lottery for three consecutive years. The PA has also been in favour of a lottery, but they want it expanded to eight teams to further dissuade tanking.
A draft for international players. This would scrap the current system that features an international free-agent signing window and a bonus pool system in which teams can only offer international players a certain amount of money.
An expanded post-season bracket. MLB wants to expand the playoffs to involve 14 teams, a significant jump from the current 10-team format. The players have said they’re will …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Report: Sheldon Keefe signs two-year extension with Leafs

At least one pending free agent is off the table in Toronto, as the Maple Leafs have reportedly signed head coach Sheldon Keefe to a two-year extension. Keefe, 41, is entering his third season behind the Leafs bench.

Sources say Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe has agreed to a 2-year extension. He was entering the final year of his deal. Signed through 23-24 now. More details on Insider Trading shortly on Sportscentre. @TSNHockey @TheAthletic
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) September 30, 2021

This extension keeps Keefe as Leafs head coach through the 2023/24 season. The three-year agreement he signed when he replaced Mike Babcock during the 2019/20 season was set to expire at the conclusion of the 2021/22 campaign.
In his short time in Toronto, Sheldon Keefe has had an incredibly successful regular-season record. His .660 points percentage with the Leafs ranks as the best in Leafs history, ahead of Frank Carroll (1921, .625 PTS%) and Pat Quinn (1999-2006, .591 PTS%). Despite this, the pressure is on following two consecutive first-round exits under his tenure.
The timing of this extension is fascinating. With all eyes focused on the Leafs to perform in the postseason, a preseason contract extension for the head coach could be perceived as curious timing. In reality, …

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Author: Kyle Cushman / The Leafs Nation

TLN Top 20 Leafs: #18 David Kampf

David Kampf might be the least hyped Toronto Maple Leaf addition I’ve ever seen in my time as a Leafs fan. Not that he should be hyped, but with every signing and trade throughout the year, there’s always a few fans that are super excited of them, whether it’s the Kurtis Gabriels or Cody Cecis getting hyped by the anti-analytics crowd, or even Travis Boyd, who at least had some good underlying numbers so there was some intrigue with him.
This also showed in his rankings, as no one ranked him higher than 16, which is kind of low for someone who might be slotted on the third line, and only one person didn’t have him ranked. He rounds out at 18, where we continue the countdown.
Five Interesting Stats
5v5 CF% Rel
5v5 xGF% Rel
5v5 CF% Rel w/o Kane
5v5 xGF% Rel w/o Kane
Sh%
3.16%
1.66%
4.83%
4.18%
1.6%
Part of the reason there isn’t a ton of hype behind Kampf is that there isn’t really a whole lot he does. His point totals are underwhelming, his basic underlying numbers don’t do a whole lot. That said, he did play for the team that ranked …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Just what are the Leafs getting in David Kämpf?

One of the least known additions to the Leafs’ roster for next season is the former Chicago player, David Kämpf. The center has amassed four relatively quiet seasons in Chicago’s bottom-six at the NHL level.
The Leafs announced at the start of free agency that they’ve signed Kämpf to a two-year contract at $1.5M per year. While Kämpf isn’t the top-six add people were clamoring for (those two open spots appear to be a competition between Mikheyev and new adds Käse, Ritchie and Bunting), the newly acquired center will likely be a staple on Toronto’s fourth line next season.
David Kämpf Origin Story
In order to understand what the Leafs are getting in this new acquisition, we must start with where he came from.
While he doesn’t come from Krypton or get a bunch of shrapnel in his chest, David Kämpf has his own origin story worth telling. Born in the Czech Republic, Kämpf came up through the junior Czech leagues with the Pirati Chomutov organization. He spent nearly his entire development with Chomutov’s various development programs through U16, U18, U20, Czech 2, and eventually the Czech Extraliga, …

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Author: Ryan Hobart / The Leafs Nation

Blue Jays make Big Bullpen Improvement with Small Trade

The Blue Jays bullpen has had an up and down season to say the least. They were great in April, you could argue even the best bullpen in the league, at least by Win Probability Added (WPA). Then injuries happened as those key arms in April (Merryweather, Phelps, Borucki) started getting hurt and missing significant amounts of time. In May the Blue Jays again by WPA were one of the worst pens in the league. June has been a better month but the late-inning collapses keep coming and as the season goes on those losses become bigger. It’s not entirely on the arms in the pen or on Charlie Montoyo. With all the injuries you are asking a lot out of these relievers, many of which were claimed off waivers or called up from AAA, and shouldn’t be pitching in high leverage situations.

The Blue Jays finally addressed the need for bullpen help when they acquired Adam Cimber from the Marlins yesterday. Cimber has been very good this season with a 2.88 ERA, 3.22 FIP and a 4.86 xFIP. Cimber is a groundball pitcher with a career 54.9% groundball rate. He has yet to give up a home run this season and …

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Author: Paul Berthelot / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Chris Boucher disrespected in Sixth Man of the Year voting

Toronto Raptors: Chris Boucher disrespected in Sixth Man of the Year voting

The one Toronto Raptors player that had at least a puncher’s chance at taking home an award this season was power forward Chris Boucher, who had his eyes set on the Sixth Man of the Year award. Given Boucher’s defensive impact to go along with his improved offense, he certainly had a compelling case. Boucher […]
Toronto Raptors: Chris Boucher disrespected in Sixth Man of the Year voting – 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 draft: Ranking the top 4 prospects and their fit

Toronto Raptors draft: Ranking the top 4 prospects and their fit

The Toronto Raptors have had a forgettable season, to say the least. The Raptors were officially eliminated from playoff contention for the first time in 8 seasons as they just couldn’t overcome what seemed like a complete tidal wave of bad luck that ruined the season before it even began. This Raptors draft will be […]
Toronto Raptors draft: Ranking the top 4 prospects and their fit – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Matthew Chiu / Raptors HQ

J.T. Realmuto might fall into the Blue Jays’ lap

We’re all expecting (or, at least, hoping) to see the Blue Jays make a big splash this off-season.

Who might that be? We’ve heard Toronto connected to just about every name out there this winter. George Springer seems like a natural fit to fill the need in centre field, DJ LeMahieu would also help fill holes around the infield, and Trevor Bauer would give the team another top-end arm.
But the Blue Jays’ big splash might end up being someone unexpected — J.T. Realmuto.
The Mets, like the Blue Jays, are expected to be a big player in free agency this off-season. They have a new owner who’s willing to spend and their name is attached to virtually every player available. If the Blue Jays want somebody, there’s a good chance that they’ll be in a bidding war with the Mets.
Realmuto was one of those names that the Mets have been associated with all off-season as the solution to the team’s woes behind the plate. But, according to the New York Post, the Mets are instead interested in James McCann, who had an excellent showing in 2020 in a very small sample size.
The …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Jumbo Joe is a Toronto Maple Leaf

Joe Thornton is a Toronto Maple Leaf, at least, according to the Leafs.

We’ve got a JUMBO announcement
Joe Thornton has signed a one-year contract! #LeafsForever
Details: https://t.co/ZfHrvgA7FB pic.twitter.com/GLKDyXfvNb
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) October 16, 2020

According to Chris Johnston, he has taken the Jason Spezza route and signed for league minimum.

Joe Thornton’s contract with the #leafs includes no 35-plus performance bonuses. He signed just for the league minimum salary: $700,000.
Big help for Toronto’s cap situation.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) October 16, 2020

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation