Toronto Raptors mock draft featuring exclusively Big Ten players

Toronto Raptors mock draft featuring exclusively Big Ten players

The Toronto Raptors have seen their season mercifully come to an end, as they wrapped up their first campaign in almost a decade that saw them sitting at home instead of playing playoff basketball. Raptors mock draft season has also begun with this development, as the NBA Draft nuts out there are trying their best […]
Toronto Raptors mock draft featuring exclusively Big Ten players – 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: Kyle Lowry going to the Knicks would be a gut-punch

Toronto Raptors: Kyle Lowry going to the Knicks would be a gut-punch

Now that the Toronto Raptors have officially seen the clock strike midnight on their 2020-21 season, all attention has been fixed firmly on Kyle Lowry, as the impending free agent might decide to say goodbye to his adopted home after nearly a decade. The New York Knicks, rivals in the division, could be a potential […]
Toronto Raptors: Kyle Lowry going to the Knicks would be a gut-punch – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Digging into Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s First Cold Stretch of the Season

For the first time this season, we have seen Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in a little bit of a rough patch.

Since hitting three home runs against Washington, Vlad has slumped to a .211/.375/.263 line with no home runs, and just a 79 wRC+. The struggles really began the series before Washington in Tampa Bay. In three games at the Trop, Vlad was just 1-for-11 with two walks and two strikeouts. Tampa had a very specific game plan on how to pitch to Vlad.

They clearly attacked Vlad up and in and down away. They did a good job at keeping the ball out of the middle of the plate where Vlad can do damage. When we last discussed Vlad I noted how he wasn’t chasing the pitch at the letters, and he still isn’t. The Rays tested him with lots of pitches up out of the zone, but Vlad wasn’t chasing. The Rays understood they can’t strike Vlad out so they had to get him out in the strike zone, and they did that by targeting the areas where Vlad does the least damage.

This is Vlad’s slugging percentage per ball in play. You can see he …

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Author: Paul Berthelot / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Jalen Harris can use next games to prove long-term value

Toronto Raptors: Jalen Harris can use next games to prove long-term value

The Toronto Raptors have seen Malachi Flynn blossom from a complete offensive liability into an Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month, but they still don’t know what they have in guard Jalen Harris. Due to injury and his time in the G League, Harris has averaged just 5.6 minutes per game in eight games with […]
Toronto Raptors: Jalen Harris can use next games to prove long-term value – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

The Tanner Roark era has come to an end

There’s a pretty good chance we’ve seen Tanner Roark throw his last pitch in a Blue Jays uniform.

The team announced today that Roark had been designated for assignment. This comes as Teoscar Hernandez was reinstated from the COVID list, which meant the team needed to remove somebody from the 40-man roster to make room for him.
The fact that the Blue Jays opted to DFA Roark despite the fact that they don’t even know who their starting pitcher is going to be on either Saturday or Sunday sort of speaks volumes about how they view him at this point. Roark made just one start, got shelled, was relegated to the bullpen, and made just two appearances.
There are a lot of teams out there with injuries so maybe somebody will make a deal for Roark. Obviously, nobody is going to straight-up claim him and take on his albatross salary, but the Blue Jays could possibly eat his money and get a scratch ticket from the bottom of somebody’s farm system.
Regardless, the Roark era, more than likely, is over with the Blue Jays. He pitched 54 2/3 innings and allowed 41 earned runs. It was ugly.
Sail on, …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Should the Raptors pursue a Marc Gasol reunion if the Lakers buy him out?

Toronto Raptors: Should the Raptors pursue a Marc Gasol reunion if the Lakers buy him out?

The Toronto Raptors have seen their chances to contend completely derailed this season, and the lack of quality at the center position is the main reason why. When Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka left town, the Raptors replaced them with Aron Baynes and Alex Len, both of whom have struggled mightily. While Gasol was excellent […]
Toronto Raptors: Should the Raptors pursue a Marc Gasol reunion if the Lakers buy him out? – 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: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson signing with Blazers shows how Raptors screwed up 2020 offseason

Toronto Raptors: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson signing with Blazers shows how Raptors screwed up 2020 offseason

The Toronto Raptors have gradually seen their playoff hopes for the 2020-21 season slip away, with the trade of Norman Powell the culmination of a very long streak of futility. One player who did not stick around for what has been a very disappointing year is power forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, who hasn’t suited up this […]
Toronto Raptors: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson signing with Blazers shows how Raptors screwed up 2020 offseason – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

The NHL’s all-Canadian Division could be unlikely after new Canada pilot project

The NHL’s all-Canadian Division could be unlikely after new Canada pilot project

The NHL’s 2021 start date is still yet to be seen but there have been some interesting developments throughout the last few days. It started with Vegas Golden Knights owner, Bill Foley, releasing some information on a possible ‘Canadian division’.
“Yeah, but they’re going to be playing in the Canadian division this year.” Said Foley after being asked about facing former Golden Knight, Nate Schmidt, a lot next season.
This sparked many reports and a lot of reaction on social media, but could the possible division be headed on its way out as fast as it was introduced?
On Thursday, the Government of Alberta, alongside the Government of Canada released plans on a pilot project for faster testing on international travellers. The plan states that international travellers will be tested once entering the country and will enter quarantine until the test results come back. If they come back negative, they’re free to leave quarantine as long as they agree to another test six or seven days after arrival into the country.
“The pilot project (..) will help inform decisions on new measures for international travel.” Said Health Canada in an email. The pilot project will begin on November 2nd …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

A Walk-Around Tour of the NHL bubble in Toronto

“I’ve never seen any fencing up in Toronto with the words ‘Stanley Cup Playoffs’.” I said to my naive self before remembering that the Maple Leafs have been in the playoffs in each of the last three seasons. Yes, it’s been that long.
As the return of NHL hockey inches closer and closer, there’s more and more being blocked off around the two hub cities, Toronto and Edmonton.

A look at the NHL’s “secure zone” in Toronto. pic.twitter.com/MB1yP1opPb
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) July 24, 2020

It’s both an exciting and eerie time for hockey. 24 teams are expected to fly into their perspective hub cities today and must be there by Sunday, according to the NHL.
With players not knowing what to expect, it makes this Return-to-Play plan more interesting once the players arrive in their bubbles.
And as much as I want to say that construction has gotten underway, that’s not really the right word to use for this situation.
The fences are up — so far.
Each day, there’s more that’s done to shield the players from …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

NHL and NHLPA agree to July 10th training camp opening date

So today we’ve seen another step forward in the return of hockey and it is targeted for about a month from now…

NHL, NHLPA agree on opening date for formal training camps. https://t.co/35lF9nEob0 pic.twitter.com/l6W4VLXVYv
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) June 11, 2020
Given that this is the entirety of what has been released at this point there are a number of questions that remain.

How long will the training camps be?
Do the training camps have to take place in the country in which the teams will end up playing, assuming there is still a 14 day quarantine period for people crossing the border into Canada? Does this likely mean there won’t be a Canadian hub city due to this potential roadblock?
When will we get our Hub city and Phase 4 announcements?
This is an awfully short announcment given the number of details that would have required NHL and PA agreement, how is that relationship going?
And the big question, is this a good idea?

While the promise of hockey has a huge appeal, the fact that there always seem to be more questions left than answers creates …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation