The Leafiest Leafs game to ever Leaf

Meet the new team, same as the old team.
Look, obviously it’s only the second game of the season. Obviously it’s the second half of a back-to-back with travel. Obviously they’re still without Matthews. Obviously they’re still figuring out things and shaking off that start of the season rust. Obviously Ottawa’s first goal should’ve been waived off and the other two were bad bounces. Obviously the refs didn’t help their case either.
There are plenty of excuses for the team’s performance, but at the same time, this is still supposed to be one of the best teams in the league playing against one of the worst teams in the league. They didn’t show up to start the game, and while it’s not entirely their fault for any of the goals they allowed, they still gave up a plethora of chances that probably would’ve ended up in goals anyways.
It’s only the second game of the season, so it’s hard to truly freak out at this team, but this is also similar to performances that we’ve seen from this team plenty of times in the past, and …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

An open letter to Martin Marincin

So, I guess this is goodbye, huh? Obviously this isn’t the circumstances I wanted, but hopefully you’re happy with them.
You probably don’t know who I am — but I definitely know who you are. You’re great person. A mysterious man. An elite highlight-reel goal-scorer.
It all started back on February 29th, 2020 when you scored that goal. It was truly amazing.
The smile on your face after you scored it, the joy everyone had when you put it past Thatcher Demko — each and every moment you stepped onto the ice after that — I was looking for you.
A few days after the goal, I was pressed to buy your jersey. One of my tweets hit 500 retweets and I had to answer the bell, which for me meant purchasing a possible one-in-ten Martin Marincin Leafs home jersey.
Yep. I spent $280 on that thing.
The man making the jersey wondered if I was crazy when I asked for it, to which I said “no”. But honestly, I didn’t know what was to come in the future.
Because of you, I’ve met a lot of great people online. Great isn’t even the right word — they’re incredible. …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Should Raptors have held onto Terence Davis after hot start to Kings career?

Toronto Raptors: Should Raptors have held onto Terence Davis after hot start to Kings career?

While the Norman Powell move was obviously the highlight of the deadline for the Toronto Raptors, Masai Ujiri was able to recoup a few second-round picks by offloading Matt Thomas to the Utah Jazz and Terence Davis, a restricted free agent at the end of this season, to the Sacramento Kings. Davis was averaging 7.6 […]
Toronto Raptors: Should Raptors have held onto Terence Davis after hot start to Kings career? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Page 6ix Wednesday, February 17th: Desert Storm

Obviously, the big story in hockey this week is the disaster in the desert – that is, the absolute cluster inside the Arizona Coyotes organization. But this hasn’t been a quiet week for hockey in general, with more COVID concerns, some baby news, and even some fun! Let’s take a look, eh?
Leafs Lads
The boys in blue lost two in a row this week for the first time this season, which objectively in the grand scheme of things is probably not a big deal, but in the moment definitely sucks.
However, the good news is that cat-loving cheerleader slash goalie Jack Campbell is skating, which is a positive sign for a somewhat imminent return!

Jack Campbell was out on the ice with goalie coach Steve Briere this morning before #Leafs optional skate. He’s been out with a leg injury since Jan. 24.
Here he is cleaning up all his pucks. pic.twitter.com/OXWxGwynHo
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) February 15, 2021

Joe Thornton is back in the lineup, too, scoring a goal in his first game back.
But the biggest news to hit Leafland this week was the trade –

We’ve acquired Alex Galchenyuk from Carolina in exchange for Egor Korshkov …

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Author: Mer / The Leafs Nation

Espinal, Drury, and Panik will split time at short in Bo Bichette’s absence

Navigating Bo Bichette’s injury obviously isn’t going to be easy for the Blue Jays.

Bichette, as of right now, is the team’s best player, and, just as he was starting to really get heated up at the plate, the team’s offence finally broke out largely because of him.
Charlie Montoyo spoke on Monday about how he’s going to handle the shortstop position in Bo’s absence, suggesting that he’ll roll with a combination of Brandon Drury, Joe Panik, and Santiago Espinal at the position.

Charlie Montoyo on what happens next with the #BlueJays shortstop position: pic.twitter.com/SQyX4BjLU2
— Keegan Matheson (@KeeganMatheson) August 17, 2020

There isn’t really anybody down at the Alternate Training Site who can step in and fill Bo’s shoes. I mean, I’m sure we’d all love to see a top prospect like Jordan Groshans or Austin Martin get a crack to see what they can do in this weirdo season, but there’s obviously no way the Blue Jays will start either top prospect’s service time right now.
Apparently, they’re …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Who would the Leafs play if the NHL goes right into the playoffs?

Obviously we have to preface every one of these pieces by saying no one really has any idea if the NHL can, and eventually will, come back to try and finish the 2019-20 campaign in some fashion. All we can do is talk in hypothetical and speculate on what things might look like based on what plans are being hashed out behind the scenes.
With that said, information does continue to spill out, so let’s take a look at the latest potential return scenario and how it would affect the Leafs.
There’s been a lot of speculation about whether the league should even try to finish its regular season. Is there really any point to assemble teams who have nothing left to play for? Apparently the league is starting to lean towards not bringing them back. According to Larry Brooks of the NYPost, who surely has friends at the league office, it’s most likely the league instead goes right into a 24-team tournament with sort of a pre-playoffs and then the more typical structure.
The dynamic changes by the day, if not by the hour, but sources on both sides of the …

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Author: Ryan Fancey / The Leafs Nation

For the Leafs, Babcock’s high salary is not a reason to keep him around

We obviously need to keep prefacing these types of articles by pointing out that there is no evidence of the Leafs’ management group leaning one way or the other with Mike Babcock’s return to the bench next season. It’s been covered in detail to this point that GM Kyle Dubas didn’t give the coach a ringing endorsement in the locker clear-out day, and instead chose to put the spotlight on himself, saying everything is up for evaluation. So as of now things seem pretty wide open, even if you or I believe the actual chances of Babcock getting fired are slim to none.
With that out of the way, let’s revisit the ‘what if they do’ side of this whole thing, even if that ‘do’ is only seriously considering pulling this trigger without actually doing it.
A big problem people have continually pointed out about the Leafs replacing Babcock is the sheer magnitude of the move. And with that comes the obvious factor of his salary, believed to be in the range of 6-million dollars annually and among the top of the league — at the time of signing it set the records and created a new …

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Author: Ryan Fancey / The Leafs Nation