The Leafs 3 stars of the week: Auston Matthews hits 50-goal mark, Mitch Marner makes Maple Leaf history

The week of the trade deadline was a pretty quiet one for the Toronto Maple Leafs with just two games on their schedule, one at home against the Devils, and one on the road against the Canadiens. They liked their game against New Jersey, as well as their game against Montreal, but left Saturday night upset without the two points given how well they played that night. Fast forward to the next week and Toronto has four games on their schedule, with two against some big Atlantic division teams in the Panthers and Bruins, so the Maple Leafs had to be ready for the week that was ahead.
They opened their week on Sunday night at home in a clash against the Florida Panthers for the first time this season, and following a loss to the Canadiens 24 hours prior, some of us were wondering how this team would come out and perform on the second half of a back-to-back against one of the best teams in the league. Wel …

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Author: Joseph Zita / The Leafs Nation

TLN Top 20 Leafs: #9 Petr Mrazek

Following a relatively quiet offseason in which no blockbuster additions were made, Petr Mrazek ranks as the highest new Toronto Maple Leafs player in our Top 20 Leafs rankings.
Over the past three seasons, Mrazek has built up stock as one of the league’s best tandem goaltenders. With Jack Campbell’s emergence last season and Frederik Andersen’s declining play, Mrazek’s strong resume as a tandem goaltender made him a coveted free agent for the Leafs, signing him minutes after the opening of free agency.
Coming to Toronto on a three year, $3.8 million AAV contract with a 10 team no-trade list, the expectation is for Mrazek to push Campbell for the starter’s job and provide dependable starts. The biggest cap hit added this offseason by Toronto, the allocation of $3.8 million to goaltending rather than forward depth reiterates the Leafs faith in Mrazek and his importance to this team.
Five Important Stats

2018-2021 Starts
2018-2021 Record
2018-2021 Shutouts
2018-2021 Quality Start%

2018-2021 5v5 HDSV%

90
50-32-8
10
54.44%
.847
Over the past three seasons in Carolina, Petr Mrazek has quietly put together a strong resume. While by no means among the top goaltenders in the league, Mrazek stabilized what was a consistently underperforming …

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Author: Kyle Cushman / The Leafs Nation

Rumours: Back pocket goaltenders for the Leafs and is this the calm before the storm?

It’s been as quiet as it’s been in weeks on the Leafs rumours front, and I’m sure that comes as welcome break to many of our readers who are tired of the rampant speculation, and suggested improvements that come with this time of year. I admit I get that. It’s tiring to write about every name that comes up, and admittedly when we get excited about speculating on someone it’s hard to make the case for breaking up a Leafs team that’s sitting at the top of their division, doesn’t have a ton cap wiggle room, and has prospects we’d rather not see shipped out for a modest chance of improvement.
While I get that notion, I’d also argue that there is something to learn from the Tampa Bay Lightning last season, who swung for the fences on players that might not seem like the biggest names, but without question Blake Coleman was a valuable add for them. Much more debatably the Lightning also got what they wanted out of players like Zach Bogosian and Barclay Goodrow as well.
Another more extreme example might be when the Blue Jackets blew up …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs add Ian Scott to their taxi squad

I guess it won’t be a quiet few days in Leafs land, as the day has already seen the departure of Travis Boyd, but with every departure comes a new beginning, and that new beginning is the arrival of Ian Scott.

Goaltender Ian Scott has been reassigned to the @MapleLeafs taxi squad.
— Leafs PR (@LeafsPR) March 22, 2021

So, the good news here is that Ian Scott is healthy enough that he can now practice and hang out in the Leafs pressbox. The other shoe that still needs to fall is what does Ian Scott being on the Leafs taxi squad mean besides the fact they want to keep Woll on the Marlies for the time being.
Well, it could mean that Andersen is hurt enough to be going on the injured reserve.
It could mean the Leafs want Hutchinson to go down to the Marlies and get in some games.
What it means is this year and taxi squads continue to be weird, but interesting and we’ll have to wait patiently to see why this happened.
 

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs and Greyhounds, Draft BFFs?

Last year was a quiet draft on the Soo front. No new Greyhounds. A very different story from Kyle Dubas’ first draft as GM where he traded down to select Rasmus Sandin in the first round, and went with overager Mac Hollowell in the fourth round. Both of those picks seem to be solid so far as Sandin is on the verge of making the Leafs roster, and Hollowell has steadily been progressing through his first pro year. There is something to be said for familiarity. The fact that Kyle Dubas can put trust in the organization that is developing the Leafs prospects is significant.
That being said, the Greyhounds need to have players worth drafting, and this year they certainly have a few worth considering.
Ryan O’Rourke-D
O’Rourke is a left shooting defenseman slated for the late first round, but much more likely, the second round. O’Rourke’s size, mean streak, and stay at home play check a lot of boxes for what the Leafs could use down the road, a possible Muzzin replacement in a few years, but alas, trading down for O’Rourke isn’t going to be a popular move in a deep …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Are the Leafs sellers?

So far things are pretty damn quiet, but it’s also only 10 AM, so hang in there. The word out there is that the Leafs are moving into more of a sellers mindset and the Leafs aren’t going all in finding solutions today.

“I just think the #Leafs as an organization have decided not to bet on this team this year.”@FriedgeHNIC on how Saturday night’s loss may have impacted how Kyle Dubas approaches the #TradeDeadline @ScottyMacThinks @mikezigomanis. #LeafsForever
: https://t.co/q0PugNT8nv pic.twitter.com/F31Y1r6X3f
— Sportsnet 590 The FAN (@FAN590) February 24, 2020
I have to say if the result of this is a quiet day from the Leafs, the organization isn’t really inspiring a lot of confidence. If the Leafs need to be shaken up, perhaps you start the shake up when teams are throwing around 1st round picks for J.G. Pageau. If you think this team has a shot, well, I’m not sure what’s wrong with you, but you pick up some depth for 4th round picks.
Tyson Barrie appears to be as good as gone, and we& …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Examining Toronto’s buyout market options

After a quiet trade deadline, the Toronto Raptors seek an alternate method to improve their roster. Here are the top buyout candidates they should pursue. The Toronto Raptors shocked the world last year when they won their franchise NBA championship. Leading up to it, there were multiple roster moves that allowed Nick Nurse’s squad to […]
Toronto Raptors: Examining Toronto’s buyout market options – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jeff Borsuk / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors: Stock Take, plus Kyle Lowry has a great week

The Toronto Raptors split a fairly quiet week with a win and a loss. Whose stock rose during the week and who took a hit? If you’re counting the Toronto Raptors are into the third week of the season and we’re now in our third edition of “Stock Take”. Time really flies by when you’re […]
Toronto Raptors: Stock Take, plus Kyle Lowry has a great week – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Thomas Valentine / Raptors HQ

Grading Every Leafs Move on a Busy July 1st

The Leafs certainly didn’t keep quiet yesterday.
Between clearing the equivalent of a small nation’s GDP off of their cap, diving headfirst into the bargain bin, and trading one of the franchise’s longest-standing and deeply-rooted players in recent memory, Kyle Dubas came out swinging for the Canada Day festivities, leaving a trail of carnage in his path.
As a result, the Toronto Maple Leafs are a better hockey team right now than they were 48 hours ago. At least, when viewing their moves on the whole. How did each individual transaction play out, however?
Well, I’m glad you asked.
Trade: Nikita Zaitsev + Connor Brown + Michael Carcone to Ottawa for Cody Ceci + Ben Harpur + Aaron Luchuk + 2020 3rd Round Pick
Grade: B++
It’s hard not to watch the Leafs jettison both of Nikita Zaitsev and Connor Brown at once, clearing a combined $6.6 million off their ever-tightening cap – and stripping Mike Babcock of two over-used toys, as well – and give them an A for their troubles.
On the surface, at least, it seems like they’ve earned it.
This trade was a future-altering move for a franchise very much in need of one. The decision yesterday to move out …

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Author: Mike Stephens / The Leafs Nation

There’s no way the Tampa Bay Expo Rays of Montreal could be a thing, right?

There have been quiet, behind-the-scenes whispers about baseball returning to Montreal for quite some time now, but yesterday, the door got kicked down. Major League Baseball has granted the struggling Tampa Bay Rays permission to explore the possibility of splitting their home games between The Trop and Montreal.

Rays receive permission to explore possibility of a split-season between Tampa Bay and Montreal, Canada. pic.twitter.com/tTH4YR8JrC
— MLB (@MLB) June 20, 2019

The Rays, as we know, play in a shit-hole of a stadium slammed in the middle of an inconvenient location. It’s less of a ballpark, you know, with the sights, and sounds, and lovely summer sky, and more of an abandoned Costco with a gross, muggy aesthetic that feels like it should be used exclusively for NRA conventions. Tropicana Field has played a key role in the team finishing either second last or dead last in attendance for the past decade.
Baseball in Tampa Bay is a massive issue right now. There’s no doubt that the Rays need an upgrade to their barn because The Trop is wildly inadequate, but the organization simply hasn’t been able to get the ball rolling on any kind of …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation