Expectations are high for the Leafs, as they should be

Now that the Leafs have officially been named the best team in Canada, or Canada’s team, if you will, it’s time to shift the focus from being first in the division to actually winning a playoff round. Given that there isn’t a Boston or a Tampa to contend with and the Leafs worst record against a playoff bound North Division team is presently 6-3-0 (Jets), it seems like it’s okay to set our expectations a little higher than just winning a round. As we kick off a week of playoff previews on The Leafs Nation we will layout our responses to the simple question, “what are your playoff expectations for the Leafs?”
Ryan Hobart
I would expect the Leafs to get past their first and second round opponents, given that they’re from the same division where the Leafs have won every season series this year. Beyond that, I’m expecting disappointment when the Leafs have to face a tougher opponent, be it the Lightning or whoever.
Michael Mazzei
I think expectations should be kept at a minimum until the Leafs can prove they are cable of winning a playoff series. Simply put, how this …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs by the Numbers: Travis Boyd

Did you know the Leafs have a player named Travis Boyd? Some of you answered yes, but others this might be a reminder of one of the depth signings that occurred in the craziness that was the first few days of free agency. Boyd might lack the flash or the name recognition of players like Simmonds, Brodie, Thornton, or even Bogosian, but that doesn’t mean he can’t play an important role on the 2021 Leafs. Perhaps it’s a little obvious given his depth position on the Leafs, but…
Travis Boyd’s number is 13.
We’ll boldly assume that the goal for Boyd this year is to be the team’s 13th forward. I’m sure ideally he’d like to slot in as the 4th line center, but looking at the depth in front of him, 13th forward should be ambitious enough for him.
Boyd did pretty well last year in his 24 games played for the Capitals last season. He picked up 10 points in 24 games, which isn’t too shabby for a fourth liner, and averaged 11:45 of ice time in the games he dressed. The problem seemed to be with getting him into the lineup, a challenge he …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Six Name Digit Murphy as Franchise’s First Head Coach

Toronto’s new NWHL team, The Toronto Six, has named Margaret “Digit” Murphy as their first head coach.

NEWS: We have named Digit Murphy as our first head coach in franchise history
: https://t.co/jv5ZxeGDwc pic.twitter.com/xwLXqG4lNr
— Toronto Six (@TheTorontoSix) October 20, 2020

Murphy is also the franchise’s president, a role she will maintain as she steps into her coaching position. She brings extensive coaching experience to the team, and has been involved in all aspects of the franchise’s development.
Looking forward to following The Six this upcoming season!

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Author: MerOutLoud / The Leafs Nation

Auston Matthews named finalist for Lady Byng trophy

Auston Matthews has been named a finalist for the Lady Byng Trophy.

The award is given out annually to the “player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.”
In 70 games this year, Matthews scored 47 goals and 80 points — both career-high numbers. Through that, Matthews only took eight PIM all season long.
Also nominated for the award were Colorado Avalanche centre Nathan MacKinnon and St. Louis Blues centre Ryan O’Reilly. O’Reilly previously won the award in 2014.
Last year’s Lady Byng winner was Florida Panthers centre Aleksander Barkov.
On Twitter: @zjlaing
The case for Auston winning can largely be found in Nick Richard’s article on What to Expect from Auston this summer:
What to expect from Auston Matthews this summer

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Author: Zach Laing / The Leafs Nation

Which current Leafs could end up in the Hall of Fame?

Earlier this week, we saw a bunch of people not named Alexander Mogilny get inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame, and it got me thinking. This current era of the Toronto Maple Leafs have seen a surplus of extremely talented players play for this team, some so talented that one day they could find themselves in the same position as Jarome Iginla, Marian Hossa, and Kim St-Pierre when their careers are done.
So, let’s try and figure out who those players might be. I’ll be organizing this based on their likelihood that they end up in the Hall of Fame. Now it should be noted, this is going to be solely based on their play now and how it projects to play out over the course of their careers. With the number of young players on this team, there are a lot of things that could change that would probably affect their chances.
This stuff isn’t official, it’s just for fun.
The “Most Likely” Candidates
John Tavares
We’ll start with the player that has had enough tenure in the league to probably deem his chances as “ …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Improvements on both ends fuelling Siakam’s evolution

Set to appear in his first All-Star Game on Saturday, named a starter and drafted by Team Giannis, Pascal Siakam of the Toronto Raptors is having quite the season. Let’s examine where he’s improved the most in 2019-20. When the Toronto Raptors drafted Pascal Siakam with the 27th pick in 2016, nobody saw this coming. […]
Toronto Raptors: Improvements on both ends fuelling Siakam’s evolution – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jordan Skuse / Raptors HQ