Toronto Raptors: 3 most memorable home openers in franchise history

Toronto Raptors: 3 most memorable home openers in franchise history

The Toronto Raptors begin their 27th NBA season when they host the Washington Wizards at Scotiabank Arena on October 20 for what will be one of the most memorable home-openers in Raptors franchise history. This Raptors home opener has extra significance. Exactly 600 days will have elapsed since the last NBA regular-season game in Toronto, […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 most memorable home openers in franchise history – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Brian Swane / Raptors HQ

News and Notes: The Leafs sign an EBUG, Holl out Liljegren in, Mrazek won’t be out long-term

So the 2021-22 season is not even a week old yet and the Leafs are already in full chaos mode with all of the news circulating this morning in regards to the lineup and the status of some injured players.
We begin with the biggest story of them all, which is the Leafs being short on cash and resorting to unique methods to get around that problem.

The #leafs don’t have the cap space to call up a goaltender to take Petr Mrazek’s spot behind Jack Campbell tonight. They will likely sign U of T goalie Alex Bishop to an amateur tryout to back up Campbell.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) October 16, 2021

What, David Ayres was not available?
Jokes aside, this must be huge for Alex Bishop who has posted decent numbers during his time in the QMJHL and USports. He is in his senior year at the University of Toronto so this will surely be a moment he will never forget. He will most likely sit on the bench for the entire game, but it wouldn’t shock me if Sheldon Keefe were to do him a solid and let him play the final few minutes depending on how things go …

Read More

Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

A Look at a Leaf: William Nylander vs. the Canadiens (October 13)

Well, here’s to a new Toronto Maple Leafs season and a new series I had formulated in my head, in which I will focus on and breakdown one player’s performance for (hopefully) a majority of Leafs games.
Some of these will be longer than others, some might not even be about a good performance, but I’m looking forward to it and to this upcoming season. Fans are back, we’re getting an 82-game schedule as long as everything goes smoothly, so things are looking up this. The Leafs opened their season against the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday with a 2-1 win and there was a good amount to breakdown. Specifically, who better to start this season with than William Nylander, who I think is poised to have yet another breakout season this year.
Nylander is always one of the most-talked Leafs and for good reason. He is coming into this season looking to build on a successful campaign last year that saw him net 42 points in 51 games. To be fair, the Leafs all faced a terrible, terrible fate in the playoffs at the hands of the Canadiens, but out of all the Maple Leafs in that series, …

Read More

Author: Matthew Rodrigopulle / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Maple Leafs hope to keep momentum going into season’s first battle of Ontario

After a rough start to the season opener where Jack Campbell was forced to bail out his teammates early and often during the first half of the opening frame, the team was able to settle down and control play for the remaining 50 minutes en route to a 2-1 win over their rival Montreal Canadiens. Winning a season opener against a rival is about as must-win as any game this early in the calendar can get for a team so the Toronto Maple Leafs will now look to ride that high of coming out on top of what was surely the most important Leafs vs Habs game of the past year into a game two matchup against the Ottawa Senators.
With this being the second game in two nights for the Leafs, the brand new goaltending tandem will be tested early as Petr Mrázek makes his Maple Leafs debut, hoping to match the stellar performance Jack Campbell put on the night before. Mrázek won’t be the only one getting tested however, as the Maple Leafs will be looking to show that they can have the killer instinct necessary to not only win games, but dominate games they should be winning. …

Read More

Author: Filipe Dimas / The Leafs Nation

The Leafs seek redemption as a new season opens with a playoff rematch

Preseason is finally over and the dawn of a new Leafs season is upon us. Now freed from the constraints of the all-Canadian North Division, the Leafs will take on all 31 other NHL teams this season, but the theme of this season is redemption. It is about finally rising above the middling results of seasons past and truly achieving something, so it’s only fitting that the Leafs open the season against the bitter rivals who eliminated them back in May, and in the process, handed them their most embarrassing set of losses in franchise history. I am of couse talking about the Montreal Canadiens.
And much like their last meeting with the Habs, the Leafs will be missing one of their top-two centers as Auston Matthews continues to work his way back after wrist surgery. And they may have to play without a top-3 scorer in the league as Mitch Marner is a game-time decision after an incident at practice yesterday.

Sheldon Keefe said Mitch Marner will be game-time decision, but had a positive morning with optional skate
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) October 13, 2021

Despite playing without the reigning Rocket Richard Trophy winner, the Leafs are icing a deeper, more …

Read More

Author: Dylan Murphy / The Leafs Nation

What to expect from the Toronto Marlies this season

The Toronto Marlies’ season begins this Saturday, and questions remain about their starting lineup.
The top-end of their lineup looks pretty set with players like Josh Ho-Sang, Nicholas Robertson, and Semyon Der-Arguchintsev, likely playing a lot of minutes.
However, there are also a few players who’ve arrived via the Toronto Maple Leafs in the last few days in Kurtis Gabriel, Kirill Semyonov, and Alex Biega. Each of those guys will likely challenge for a spot in the top-six too.
What’s most intriguing about this season is that it’s still mostly about development.
“It’s still development.” Marlies head coach, Greg Moore, said on Friday afternoon. “At this level, we still need to win games, we need to be competitive. Hopefully within our model and taking care of our processes each day and how we’re getting better and how we’re developing, the results will take care of themselves.“
A lot of the American Hockey League is about development, especially right now. Last season, the Leafs organization was able to have Robertson at that level. Without COVID-19, that wouldn’t be possible at the AHL level.
And now, during this season, post-COVID, we could see a line …

Read More

Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

News and Notes: Mikheyev out long-term, Matthews unavailable for the first week, and Canadiens claim Brooks off waivers from Maple Leafs

The 2021-22 NHL season starts tomorrow, and for the Toronto Maple Leafs, they start Wednesday when they host the Montreal Canadiens, so it’s only fitting that a lot of important news breaks just days before their season begins, right? Well, sit tight, because we got you covered with the latest news and notes from the Maple Leafs just days before the season kicks off. With the Ilya Mikheyev injury scare to the questions surrounding Auston Matthews come opening night to even the crazy waiver wire that was yesterday, we finally have all the answers we were all looking for.
 
Mikheyev injury
For starters, let’s talk about the Ilya Mikheyev injury scare we witnessed in their last preseason game against Ottawa. He got hit into the boards during the first period and then looked like he fell awkwardly on his wrist. He got up on his own which was a good thing to see but he never returned to the Leafs’ bench in the first period and then was later announced by the Leafs PR on Twitter that he would not return to the game due to an injury.
That initial tweet from the Leafs PR right before the …

Read More

Author: Joseph Zita / The Leafs Nation

Music Mondays: Toronto Maple Leafs preseason hype

Music Mondays: Toronto Maple Leafs preseason hype

T MINUS TWO DAYS UNTIL LEAFS REGULAR SEASON HOCKEY!
If you didn’t let out the obligatory scream that I thought you would, please do so now. I’ll give you a couple seconds.
Okay! With that out of the way we are going to get into the good stuff.
Introducing Music Mondays here at TLN, where every Monday we’ll be dropping a playlist that is completely based upon the Toronto Maple Leafs’ performance the week prior. The playlist is called Not Enough Blue! It will usually consist of 5-7 songs of varying genres. Hopefully this could also be an opportunity for some Leafs fans to find a new favourite artist. Playlists will be available both on Spotify and Apple Music. (I have both and I want to make sure everyone can enjoy this music however they choose.) PLEASE NOTE: The Spotify version will be completely clean, the Apple Music version may have explicit versions of songs. When listed in the article if a song DOES NOT have a clean version or a radio edit available on Apple Music I will put an asterisk (*) around the song title. Just in case you’re listening with family or young ones. …

Read More

Author: Marsha Joseph / The Leafs Nation

Burning Question: Can a Campbell-Mrazek tandem really work?

Think back to last season. The Leafs had a few problems to work through, just a few that come to mind were their penalty kill, being aggressive on the ice, winning a Game 7, and of course, goaltending. The question that often popped up when it came to their goalie situation was, will Frederik Andersen play his heart out and leave it all on the ice, or will he completely blow it up and not hold it down between the pipes. When it came to Jack Campbell, we wondered, was he ready, is he experienced enough? (Spoiler: He was!)
Now let’s look ahead to the upcoming season. Andersen has been traded to the Carolina Hurricanes, and the Leafs signed Petr Mrzaek to join Toronto’s new favourite, Jack Campbell. Mrazek spent most of the 2020-2021 season injured, but for the games he did play, he posted a 6-2-3 record including three shutouts. Based on those numbers, it seems hopeful, but can a Campbell-Mrazek goalie tandem really work?
It’s difficult to directly compare each goalie’s performance last season due to the shortened season, realignment of divisions, and a variety of injuries, but let’s look at some of …

Read More

Author: Roxanne Khasow / The Leafs Nation

How the Leafs stack up in statistical prediction models for the 2021-22 season

We’re very nearly at the start of the 2021-22 NHL season, and as such, all of the very smart statistical minds in the public hockey sphere are releasing their season previews showing what their models project will happen this year. Other than the playoffs, this is one of my favourite times of the year, because it allows me to learn a bit more about statistical projections while getting my excitement level up for the upcoming season.
This year we’re going to be looking at 4 models:
FiveThirtyEight
Dom Luszczyszyn of The Athletic
Evolving-Hockey
Micah Blake McCurdy of HockeyViz
Each model is constructed differently, with different levels of “open-source” information on how it’s created. I’m not going to go too in depth on how each model works, but I’ll try to give a high level description, and link to the in depth explanations where I can.
I’ll also summarize the projections in a table at the bottom of the post for quick consumption, if that’s your thing.
FiveThirtyEight
Truthfully, in writing this article I’m only now discovering that FiveThirtyEight does NHL projections. I’ve used them extensively for political projections at election time, but …

Read More

Author: Ryan Hobart / The Leafs Nation