TLN Three Stars: Game lost, Captain lost, and optimism lost

TLN Three Stars: Game lost, Captain lost, and optimism lost

Let’s start with the most important thing on our minds following that loss to the Canadiens, that is the injury to John Tavares. You can find a summary of the incident here, and aside from Chris Johnston’s update that Tavares was taken to the hospital, we are still left wondering how he’s doing.
Now as for the game itself, the Leafs were victim to Carey Price playing like the Carey Price that used to be talked about as one of the greatest goaltenders in the world. His robbing of Marner on his one-timer attempt during a 2 on 1 with Nylander was the additional bad omen the Leafs didn’t need tonight. The Habs scored shortly after the Tavares injury, and the Leafs were able to hold on for the rest of the period, and actually rally as best they could in the second with a goal from Nylander, but Price was vintage Price, and that’s all they got before the predestined short handed goal by Paul Byron in the third that put emphasis on how toxic the Leafs powerplay has been this year. Arguably Jack Campbell should want that one back, but he’s probably the third …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs’ Second Last Game Facing Second Last Sens

As the Toronto Maple Leafs start to wrap up the 2021 NHL season, in which they’ve been crowned the champions of the North division, they’ll head to Ottawa to face the second last team in that same North division.
Of course, Ottawa will only hold on to being just second last if the Vancouver Canucks can’t finish out the year, or fail to post a record with a 50% points percentage or more in their remaining games. However, as it stands currently, the wordplay-ish title is technically correct — the best kind of correct.
Toronto holds a 5-3 record against the Senators this year, which is the worst head-to-head record that they have against any opponent this season. It’s not really all that surprising to learn that the Leafs struggle with the Senators the most, as anyone who’s watched hockey for a long time can tell you that in rivalry matchups, skill seems to become less of a factor than the emotional willpower of the team.
Tonight, Toronto aims to double up on the Senators in this last contest between the two teams this season.
Tale of the Tape
The Tale of the Tape for this contest comes …

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Author: Ryan Hobart / The Leafs Nation

More fastballs, more strikes, more success for Robbie Ray

Robbie Ray has had a strong start to the season for the Blue Jays. His first two starts were very Robbie Ray-esque. Ray allowed two runs in 10 innings against the Yankees and Royals, with nine walks versus just six strikeouts. Ray limited the damage as he only allowed one home run in those two starts, even though the Blue Jays lost both of those games; they could have been much worse.

In his next two starts the home run was back, Ray allowed three homers accounting for all five of the runs he allowed. But he struck out 14 batters, didn’t walk anyone and pitched deeper into the games, throwing 12.2 innings. You total everything together and Ray has a sparkling 2.78 ERA but with a 4.73 expected ERA, a 4.83 FIP and 4.33 xFIP. Indicating Ray hasn’t pitched as well as his ERA suggests and that regression is coming.
Regression is certainly coming soon for Ray. A 93.5% left on base rate and a .237 batting average on balls in play is not sustainable over a full season. Ray however is doing certain things differently this year, which will help him continue to succeed even as certain things regress.
For Ray everything starts with the …

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Author: Paul Berthelot / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Nuggets loss reveals worrying trend on defense

Toronto Raptors: Nuggets loss reveals worrying trend on defense

The Toronto Raptors didn’t start their West Coast road trip in the best fashion, as they were dominated in the fourth quarter by MVP candidate Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets. While this Nuggets team is a playoff squad out West, Nick Nurse beat them earlier in the year, and they were playing this game […]
Toronto Raptors: Nuggets loss reveals worrying trend on defense – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

False Alarm! George Springer won’t make his debut on Tuesday

It turns out today won’t be the start of Springer Season after all.

Though there had been plenty of indication that today would be the day that George Springer finally makes his Blue Jays debut, that won’t be the case. Apparently, Springer ran at TD Ballpark in Dunedin Tuesday morning and his quad is still not back at 100%.

Multiple sources: George Springer will NOT make his #BlueJays debut tonight.
He ran at TD Ballpark earlier and the quad is still not 100% yet. Plenty more on #BlueJaysCentral at 6:30p.
— Ben Wagner (@benwag247) April 27, 2021

As much as this sucks, it really is better that the Blue Jays are taking things slowly with Springer and ensuring that he’s all good to go before bringing him back. It would really be awful if he came back a little bit too early and nicked or aggravated something and had to go back on the Injured List for another few weeks shortly after finally making his debut. The season is a marathon, not a sprint.
That said, this is obviously really disappointing as we had all built ourselves up for today finally being the day. At this point, I’m not going to …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

How good is the Leafs goaltending? Bad.

I don’t really know how to start these anymore. The Leafs have played good, but their goaltending sucked. That’s it. Where do they go from here? I have no idea.
My main hope is that Frederik Andersen can return to the net soon and hopefully provide some stability.
As we wait for that though — give my video a watch. Maybe it’ll help you like it helped me. Enjoy!

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Should point-forward Pascal Siakam become part of Toronto’s rotations?

Toronto Raptors: Should point-forward Pascal Siakam become part of Toronto’s rotations?

Amid a very poor start individually in a tough season for the Toronto Raptors, Pascal Siakam is proving once again that he is one of the best power forwards in the league, as he has proven that putting the ball in the basket is far from his only positive trait. He did struggle against Julius […]
Toronto Raptors: Should point-forward Pascal Siakam become part of Toronto’s rotations? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Jack Campbell wins 10th-straight and sets Leafs franchise record

Holy cow. Jack Campbell did the thing. 10 wins in a row to start a season. The first Leafs player to ever do it.
I don’t have many words other than “wow.” Campbell deserves everything that is coming his way after hearing about his journey to the NHL and all the battles he had to face. He’s an incredible person, the team rallies around him and again, he’s such an important person to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
After the game, I thought about how I was going to open up my video, and well, I think I did a pretty good job. I hope you enjoy the video!

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors mock draft: Grading B/R’s three picks for Toronto

Toronto Raptors mock draft: Grading B/R’s three picks for Toronto

The start date for Toronto Raptors mock draft season is here, as Nick Nurse’s historically pathetic month of March in which the squad won just one game has sent the Raptors spiraling out of control. With players like Moses Moody, Scottie Barnes, and even Cade Cunnigham if the basketball gods are kind, on the radar, […]
Toronto Raptors mock draft: Grading B/R’s three picks for Toronto – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Roster Updates: Jonathan Davis cracks the roster, Robbie Ray will miss a start, and more!

The start of the regular season is only a few days away and we’re getting closer to the Blue Jays announcing their opening day lineup.

The team made a handful of cuts on Saturday morning, optioning Santiago Espinal, Joey Payamps, Riley Adams, and Josh Palacios while also re-assigning non-roster invitees Kevin Smith, Dany Jimenez, Kirby Snead, Richard Urena, Forrest Wall, and Tyler White to the minor-league working group. Save for maybe Espinal and Payamps, none of these players were really in the mix to crack the team, and even those two aren’t overly surprising given they have options.
Elsewhere, Robbie Ray, who was having a brilliant spring before falling down the stairs, will miss his first start of the season. We don’t yet know if he’s going to go on the 10-day disabled list, but, as Scott Mitchell points out, the Blue Jays could backdate his IL trip to March 29 which would allow him to be activated on April 8. The same goes for George Springer who has been dealing with an oblique issue.
It was also announced today that Jonathan Davis will crack the team’s roster, which miiiiiiight give us an indication that the Injured …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation