Toronto Raptors: 3 Bold predictions for the Raptors next season

Toronto Raptors: 3 Bold predictions for the Raptors next season

The Toronto Raptors are set to return to NBA action in late December, which is just around the corner and we can’t wait. With the Toronto Raptors along with the other 29 teams in the league returning to action in late December, fans are at the edge of their seats just waiting for tip-off. With […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 Bold predictions for the Raptors next season – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Joseph Zita / Raptors HQ

Prospect Roundup: Rodion rises, the call of Karjala, Ovchinnikov on fire

There is still no concrete date set for the return of NHL action, but the next big event on every hockey fan’s mind is the World Juniors which is scheduled to get underway on Christmas day. The entirety of the hockey world will be ultra focused on the annual holiday tournament as there will be no NHL games competing for viewers’ attention, and it will be a great chance for organizations and their fans to get more familiar with some of their team’s top prospects. The Canadian selection camp will get underway on November 16th, and while there are no Leafs prospects expected to factor into their plans, there are some recent Leafs draft picks representing their countries at the Karjala Cup which got underway yesterday.
Rodion Amirov – LW/RW – Salavat Yulaev Ufa (KHL)
Amirov’s role with Ufa has diminished in recent weeks, to the point where he’s been seeing minimal ice time as their 13th forward in the last few games. It doesn’t look as though that will be a problem at the Karjala Cup, where he played the second most minutes of any Russian forward in their first game yesterday. He started the …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Siakam has been the Bubble’s biggest Disappointment

The Toronto Raptors have had a successful return to play in Orlando, but the same can’t be said for Pascal Siakam who is struggling to find his form as of late. It feels as if we have seen three different versions of Pascal Siakam so far this season — and he is gradually getting less […]
Toronto Raptors: Siakam has been the Bubble’s biggest Disappointment – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Alexandro Fidanza / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors: Siakam has been the Bubble’s biggest dissapointment

The Toronto Raptors have had a successful return to play in Orlando, but the same can’t be said for Pascal Siakam who is struggling to find his form as of late. It feels as if we have seen three different versions of Pascal Siakam so far this season — and he is gradually getting less […]
Toronto Raptors: Siakam has been the Bubble’s biggest dissapointment – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Alexandro Fidanza / Raptors HQ

Zach Hyman returns to Maple Leafs practice

As the NHL’s return to play inches closer each day, the Toronto Maple Leafs are filling out their opening night lineup. One name that has been absent for the team’s last few practices is Zach Hyman, who went down after blocking a shot from Jason Spezza on Friday. Fortunately, Hyman rejoined the Leafs’ main practice on Tuesday, saying he felt great.

Zach Hyman on his return to the ice: “It feels great to back, felt like it was longer than a couple of days mentally. Took a shot there [on Friday] so it was just precautionary, but I’m feeling good.”
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) July 21, 2020

During his absence, Nick Robertson found himself filling Hyman’s spot alongside Auston Matthews and William Nylander. Although Robertson played very well during the team’s scrimmages, Hyman’s return is hugely beneficial to the Leafs.
Hyman already found himself back in his usual spot on the first line during practice, skating with Matthews and Mitch Marner. The fact that he felt it was longer than a couple of days just proves how eager he is to get these playoffs going. His return increases the Leafs …

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Author: Matthew Rodrigopulle / The Leafs Nation

Nick Roberston in, Pierre Engvall out

The return of the NHL season is near, and the Leafs are slowly getting their roster for the play-in round established. During today’s practice, the team made an interesting swap at the forward position on the third line:

Some tweaks to the Leafs top two lines today, as well as D pairings:
Hyman-Matthews-MarnerNylander-Tavares-MikheyevRobertson-Kerfoot-KapanenClifford-Gauthier-SpezzaEngvall
Rielly-CeciMuzzin-HollDermott-BarrieSandin-Marincin
Andersen-Campbell
— Jonas Siegel (@jonassiegel) July 21, 2020

Seeing Nick Robertson in a third line role ahead of Pierre Engvall is quite an interesting development, to say the least. Robertson has been making impressive strides early on, including a stint on the top line with Auston Matthews and William Nylander. This is a player that has been hungry to land a spot on the Leafs roster since Day 1 of training camp, and his continued excellence is going to make Sheldon Keefe’s life tougher once it is time to assemble the lines.
If that means Engvall has to sit out, then that is a tough setback for a guy that started his Leafs tenure making impressive strides in his development. He appeared on track to be an effective checking forward on the third line with penalty-killing abilities. But Engvall did struggle to produce offensively prior …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

3 Toronto Raptors That Will Take the Next Step These Playoffs

With the Toronto Raptors getting ready to return to the floor to play some basketball, this is a perfect time for some young players to take another step in their young career. The Toronto Raptors are almost set to return to the NBA season to play eight remaining games and then begin the playoffs. The […]
3 Toronto Raptors That Will Take the Next Step These Playoffs – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Joseph Zita / Raptors HQ

Looking for a storyline in Toronto vs Columbus

With the NHL’s return to play set to begin on August 1st, the Toronto Maple Leafs have been matched up against the Columbus Blue Jackets for the qualifying round of playoffs. While sports fans gear up for a bizarre finale to the season, there seems to be a lack of storylines going into the play-in round.
Due to the lengthy hiatus, familiar themes of hot goalies, streaking teams, and nagging injuries simply aren’t there to be endlessly discussed and debated. Instead, we will need to dig deeper if we want to figure out what the narrative heading into this series will be.
While others at The Leafs Nation are doing an excellent job on previewing the upcoming best of five series by highlighting individual players, I have decided to do what Leafs fans often do best and look towards the past.
A History of Toronto vs Columbus
The most notable thing about the history of Toronto vs Columbus is that there really isn’t much history at all. The two teams have played against each other only 30 times, by far the lowest amount between Toronto and any other Eastern Conference opponent. By comparison, the Maple …

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Author: Filipe Dimas / The Leafs Nation

The 2020/21 Schedules could lead to opportunities sooner for Leafs prospects

Now that the NHL is close to finalizing it’s return to play and the new Collective Bargaining Agreement some timelines are beginning to become a bit more apparent. We know the intention is that we see hockey start being played in August and that it will run to mid-October. We know the intention is that November 1st is the start of free agency, and as a result of that we’re probably looking at early January as the start of training camps. We also know a few things more prospect centric.

August 10th will be the second draft lottery
Mid October is the target for the draft itself

What we don’t know is a lot. All of the prospect laden leagues completely shutdown. There is no return to play to finish up their years, it will be a fresh start, and presumably that fresh start could come as soon as September/October, although if the NHL isn’t playing hockey in Hub cities until August, it seems like a stretch to believe buses of teenagers will be driving from town to town to play in empty arenas.
If the junior hockey season were continuing …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Three reasons why the Toronto Raptors eight game schedule is beneficial

The Toronto Raptors are scheduled to return to action on July 31st, however, the competition is tougher than most expected. We are currently living in unprecedented times. After nearly a four-month hiatus from basketball, the NBA has officially decided to resume play for the top 22 teams starting on July 31st.  Each team will participate […]
Three reasons why the Toronto Raptors eight game schedule is beneficial – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Aditya Chandran / Raptors HQ