Matthews invisible against Montreal once again as Leafs win season opener

On May 31st, the Leafs showed up to the Scotiabank Arena to play an all-important Game 7 against the Montreal Canadiens, only to not show up at all, and lose the game.
Four and a half months later, they started off tonight’s game with the exact same effort, but at least learned from their mistakes and managed to win their first game of the season for the fifth season in a row.
Like I said, the Leafs came out flat, but that seems to be a common recurrence in this current era of the Leafs, so I don’t think too many people were concerned just yet. And of course, the Montreal Canadiens opened the scoring as well, as Jonathan Drouin scored a feel-good goal that I don’t think any fan was too mad at after returning from his leave of absence to improve his mental health. But, that’s also pretty common for the Leafs, so once again, fans weren’t too concerned.
Once the halfway point of the first period was reached, the Leafs seemed to find their feet and put in a much stronger effort for the remainder of the period, even getting a couple opportunities …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: 3 things to look for in preseason opener vs. 76ers

Toronto Raptors: 3 things to look for in preseason opener vs. 76ers

The Toronto Raptors are finally ready to play basketball in Canada after over a year away from their home. While the regular season doesn’t get kicked off until October 20, fans will be treated to a very intriguing preseason opener against a Philadelphia 76ers team that is eyeing a spot in the Finals. The Raptors […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 things to look for in preseason opener vs. 76ers – 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: Best trade in team history with Boston Celtics

Toronto Raptors: Best trade in team history with Boston Celtics

The Toronto Raptors might play in the same division as the Boston Celtics, but some parts of that fanbase haven’t viewed the Raptors as one of their main rivals, likely because this franchise was overflowing with championships before the Raptors even came into existence in the 90s. Still, these two teams have had some really […]
Toronto Raptors: Best trade in team history with Boston Celtics – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Down the Stretch They Come

As play began on August 13, Jays World was feeling pretty good about the prospect of watching our heroes make the playoffs in October. Toronto was 16-10 since the break, 29-17 over the previous (almost) eight weeks – the best record in the AL over that period – and George Springer had come back just as that turnaround was beginning and was as hot as any hitter in the game.

Looking ahead, it was easy to be excited about a schedule that promised as much as 10 wins in 15 even before you get to beat up on Baltimore. They were a mere 2 games out of the second Wild Card slot, and a half-game away from passing the Hated Yankees. It was a great time to make hay and a horrible time to go cold, and yet…here we are.
The Yankees went on a ridiculous 13 game win streak while the Jays stumbled to only six wins in that 15 with a barely-there offense most nights even though the starting pitching mostly delivered. Toronto lost EIGHT GAMES in the standings vs the Yankees in little more than two weeks. This little ill-time slumped has moved the Jays from the heart of the wild card race to …

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Author: Tammy Rainey / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Grading Scottie Barnes in his first NBA action

Toronto Raptors: Grading Scottie Barnes in his first NBA action

The beginning of NBA Summer League play means that Toronto Raptors fans were able to get their first glimpse of Scottie Barnes in red and black. The first opponent Barnes locked horns with was the rival New York Knicks, who brought in a solid haul of talent in the 2021 NBA Draft. The Raptors took […]
Toronto Raptors: Grading Scottie Barnes in his first NBA action – 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: What roles could Precious Achiuwa fill in 2021?

Toronto Raptors: What roles could Precious Achiuwa fill in 2021?

The Toronto Raptors will have to play their first set of games in almost a decade without Kyle Lowry, as he has confirmed that he will be linking up with the Miami Heat in 2021-22. As part of his decision to sign a three-year, $90 million contract, Toronto has a sign-and-trade agreement that will bring […]
Toronto Raptors: What roles could Precious Achiuwa fill in 2021? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Kyle Dubas provides an update on John Tavares and it’s good news overall

With the Leafs set to play the Canadiens for Game 2 of their first-round series, Kyle Dubas spoke with the media on Saturday morning to give an update on John Tavares’ condition. The consensus? He avoided any major structural damage but will still miss a lot of time.

John Tavares has been cleared of all structural damage to his head, neck and spine, according to Kyle Dubas.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) May 22, 2021

On the play itself (which you can watch here [trigger warning]), Tavares suffered a knee injury that is similar to the one Zach Hyman suffered a few weeks ago. That ailment appeared to have occurred on the initial trip from Ben Chiarot as their knees collided with each other. As a result, Tavares will need two weeks to recover from the knee injury.
The obvious concern is the concussion Tavares got from Corey Perry accidentally hitting his face with his leg. Dubas said that he does not want to put a timetable on when Tavares can return to the ice from said concussion as he wants to keep the captain’s family in mind before giving the green light.

Kyle Dubas said it’s “very difficult” to place a timeline on …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

The Toronto Raptors must stay the course with Pascal Siakam

The Toronto Raptors must stay the course with Pascal Siakam

With two games left to play, Pascal Siakam and the Toronto Raptors will face the Dallas Mavericks in an inconsequential contest Friday night. A long productive stretch of seven seasons of playoff basketball is now history, and the franchise will now focus on seeing what their youth is capable of in these last three games, […]
The Toronto Raptors must stay the course with Pascal Siakam – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jason Mills / Raptors HQ

One realistic and one chaotic suggestion to try and fix the Leafs power play

Breaking: The Leafs’ power play is still struggling to find some consistency.
It feels like clockwork each time their struggling man-advantage unit gets brought up on each broadcast with the commentators going over how the team has only scored three goals in that scenario since March 9th. To put into perspective how long it has been since the Leafs’ power play was dominant, Travis Boyd and Jimmy Vesey were still on the team when Auston Matthews scored a PP goal that marked the beginning of this aforementioned drought.
Earlier this month, some of the TLN staff and I went over some ideas on ways to improve Toronto’s power play (which was one for 38 at that time). To summarize my initial idea: the Leafs need to determine a combination that works and use their top unit for as long as possible based on trends suggesting that is the best method. I have since come up with two ideas that might just get the PP back on track heading into the playoffs. One of these ideas is more realistic while the other is a bit chaotic, but both have the potential to provide a spark that the team desperately needs to …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

Raptors: Would Toronto be contenders with Andre Drummond?

Raptors: Would Toronto be contenders with Andre Drummond?

The Cleveland Cavaliers had a bit of a logjam at center, as the standout play of young rim-runner Jarrett Allen has made it difficult for JB Bickerstaff to find playing time for both Allen and Andre Drummond. While he came into this season as a potential trade target, rumors have really revved up in recent […]
Raptors: Would Toronto be contenders with Andre Drummond? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ