The TLN Three Stars: Justin Bieber brings good luck to the Leafs in their win over the Kings

If you were on the fence about staying up for the Leafs playing on the west coast, hopefully you made the right decision and tuned in. Or at the very least hung in there until it was clearly getting out of hand for the Leafs and used that as a way to enjoy Leafs hockey but still make it to bed before midnight. If you did that, good for you. If you decided to skip the game, and this is your first read of what has happened, well… guess what? The scoring problem is fixed thanks to Jonathan Quick.
While there isn’t any shortage of positive takeaways from the game, I’ll start off with the Debbie Downer angle, and point out the targeted head shot on David Kampf in the first period…

David Kampf is clipped high by Kupari pic.twitter.com/EJ42g1boRW
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) November 25, 2021

Kampf was kept out of the rest of the game for precautionary reasons, and we’ll soon learn whether he’ll be returning to the Leafs lineup in the near future. Worst case scenario is that we get a brief look at Kirill Semyonov.
Hopefully we’ll soon get encouraging …

Read More

Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Raptors: 3 fun lineups when Pascal Siakam and Yuta Watanabe return

Raptors: 3 fun lineups when Pascal Siakam and Yuta Watanabe return

The Toronto Raptors have been playing through the season with a clipped wing due to injuries sustained by Pascal Siakam and Yuta Watanabe, and they’ve been surprisingly effective despite their opening injuries. While we were all optimistic of OG Anunoby and the rest stealing a couple of wins, the thought of a Siakam-less starting lineup […]
Raptors: 3 fun lineups when Pascal Siakam and Yuta Watanabe return – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Tyler Hedmann / Raptors HQ

Raptors: Unvaccinated players could face jail time in Toronto if quarantine is breached

Raptors: Unvaccinated players could face jail time in Toronto if quarantine is breached

Playing against the Toronto Raptors in 2021-22 could be a completely different experience for vaccinated players when compared to unvaccinated players, as governments at every level have imposed stricter regulations and rules on how freely players can move about and what activities they can perform. While the NBA has reportedly reached a 96% vaccination rate, […]
Raptors: Unvaccinated players could face jail time in Toronto if quarantine is breached – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Leafs get an outdoor game, but unfortunately it’s against the Sabres

Good news everyone, the Leafs will be playing outside again this year. The bad news is it will likely be against a Jack Eichel-less Buffalo Sabres team in Hamilton.

The 2022 Tim Hortons NHL #HeritageClassic will feature the @MapleLeafs and @BuffaloSabres on March 13 at Tim Hortons Field, in Hamilton, Ont. Info: https://t.co/S1v1ewXgdd pic.twitter.com/bn8twg6A6q
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) September 16, 2021

The game counts as a Sabres home game, so you can hold back any possible outrage over having to drive to Hamilton for a Leafs game instead of it being in Toronto, this is just shaving some time off the drive to Buffalo for Leafs fans who normally make that trip, and saving people the inconvenience of the border crossing, which ironically the home team fans will have to put up with. It being a Sabres home game seems like it will be so in name only, as Leafs fans generally take over the arena in Buffalo anyways, and in this scenario it seems very unlikely their fans will outnumber the Leafs fans.
This also marks the first time that an American team has been involved in the Heritage Classic, let …

Read More

Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

When could Bobby McMann be in an NHL lineup?

Bobby McMann and where he could be playing this year is very interesting. With all the players that the Toronto Marlies have, he could be sent to the Newfoundland Growlers. However, he could stick with the Marlies if he has a good training camp.
In this video, I discuss when, and if, McMann could make it to the NHL. And why I might need a little more time to figure out that answer.
Enjoy the video!

Read More

Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: 3 worst free agency blunders by Atlantic rivals

Toronto Raptors: 3 worst free agency blunders by Atlantic rivals

The Toronto Raptors have the unfortunate pleasure of playing in the toughest division in the NBA. While Masai Ujiri is trying to retool this team and make the playoffs, Toronto’s rivals are either considered to be championship contenders like the Nets and 76ers or playoff locks like the Knicks and Celtics. While the Raptors were […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 worst free agency blunders by Atlantic rivals – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

The Blue Jays need to capitalize on the struggling Red Sox this weekend

The Blue Jays are playing their best baseball of the season, the Red Sox are playing their worst baseball of the season. This has the potential to be a big weekend.

Since beating the Red Sox by a score of 13-1 at Fenway last Thursday, Boston was swept in a three-game set by the Tampa Bay Rays at The Trop and then they went ahead and lost two of three to the lowly Tigers in Detroit. The Red Sox are now behind the Rays in the American League East standings and both the Blue Jays and Yankees are gaining on them quickly.
As Alex Cora said on Thursday, nothing is going right for Boston right now, quite the change of scenery for a team that’s managed to bullshit their way through the entire season without much adversity…
“I can put it plain and simple for everybody. I don’t think you guys have to ask many questions today,” Cora told reporters after Thursday’s loss. “We didn’t pitch, we didn’t play good defense, we didn’t hit. It wasn’t a good effort today. Where we’re at right now, we gotta get better and that’s …

Read More

Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

BJN Radio Ep. 24 – The winning streak reaches four!

Boy, playing terrible teams sure is fun!

Fresh off of winning back-to-back games against the Orioles on Saturday and Sunday, the Blue Jays rolled into Miami for a two-game set with the Marlins and picked up a sweep, ultimately pushing their winning streak to a season-high four games.
We talked on the post-series podcast about George Springer’s ho-hum return and where he should be in the lineup, the excellent pitching of Robbie Ray and Ross Stripling, and the bullpen bouncing back with six effective innings. We also talked about Mark Shapiro’s radio hit on Thursday morning in which he said he was confident the team would add pieces to help them be competitive.
You can listen to the episode here…

Read More

Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Adam Brooks is having NHL stretch to remember with Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs are playing really, really well. Auston Matthews scored his 37th and 38th goal on Saturday night. Both Jason Spezza and Joe Thornton got points and extended their streak to five-straight games. Even Adam Brooks was going in this one — scoring his fourth goal in eight games this season.
Another player that had a good game was Alex Galchenyuk, who scored his first goal in seven games. Right now, it seems like the Leafs are doing everything right and I just want the playoffs to happen. Immediately.
There’s a lot to discuss about Saturday night’s game! I hope you enjoy the video!

Read More

Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Vladdy has arrived. What’s he doing differently now and will it be sustained?

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is playing on another level right now.

A triple slash of .389/.507/.667 is Bonds-esque, his 232 wRC+ ranks fourth in all of baseball behind, Acuna Jr, Trout and Mercedes. His 1.2 WAR is tied for second and matches what Vlad did in 2019 and 2020 combined. What’s most impressive about this stretch isn’t necessarily the power and the big exit velocity, it’s his plate discipline. Vlad has 11 walks and 11 strikeouts. This is the Vlad Guerrero Jr. everyone saw in the minor leagues.
We have never seen Vlad hit this well for this length of time in the big leagues. Seriously, look at his stats by week on this FanGraphs leaderboard; three of the six best weeks of Vlad’s career have been this season.  So what is Vlad doing differently this time around? Is this just another hot streak and how does this streak compare to other successful stretches for Vlad?
First, we need to establish the best stretches of Vlad’s career. Using the leaderboard above, I went through and found the five best stretches of Vlad’s young career.

Year
Dates
Plate Appearances
wRC+

2019
May 11 – May 31
76
163

2019
July 19 – August 4
66
241

2019
August 10 – August 30
61
152

2020
August 16 – August 30
63
172

2021
April  1 – April 18
67
232

Vlad has had …

Read More

Author: Paul Berthelot / Blue Jays Nation