The Toronto Maple Leafs need to stay away from UFA goalie Martin Jones

NHL free agency is less than 24 hours away, and for us hockey fans, it’s one of the greatest times in the hockey world as we get to see big-name players change teams as well as keep track of what our favourite team is doing too. The off-season is just weeks old and we have already seen numerous trades, re-signings and buyouts along with the Seattle expansion draft and the 2021 entry draft.
With countless things happening right now in the hockey world before free agency opens up, there have been some pretty big-name players who have been bought out by their former team within the past couple of weeks, and one, in particular, is someone who I wouldn’t say is a big-name anymore but it’s someone who, at his best was a good goalie for the Sharks. It’s Martin Jones.
 
Sharks buyout Jones
Earlier today, the San Jose Sharks bought out the final three years of goalie Martin Jones’ contract which now sees him as a UFA heading to the open market once free agency opens up tomorrow afternoon. Jones, who has been on a decline for the past three seasons will probably find himself a new …

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Author: Joseph Zita / The Leafs Nation

The Blue Jays have submitted an application to the Canadian federal government to return to Toronto for July 30

Is there a better way to celebrate the Fourth of July than seeing a report that the Blue Jays might be coming back to Canada by the end of the month?

Yesterday, a Twitter account called BLUEJAYS HOTSTOVE posted that the team is working to come back to the Rogers Centre with fans for July 30, which would be the beginning of a 10-game homestand against Kansas City, Cleveland, and Boston.

Interesting bit of news to share…
Blue Jays are working to have the team return to Toronto to play WITH FANS for the July 30th game. The plan should get the green light from all levels of government.
— BLUEJAYS HOTSTOVE (@bluejayhotstove) July 4, 2021

The Blue Jays have committed to playing in Buffalo through July 21. After that six-game homestand, the team will hit the road to New York to play the Mets and Boston to face the Red Sox. After that, though, they haven’t yet determined where they’ll play.
Later in the day, Shi Davidi reported at Sportsnet that the Blue Jays have submitted an application to the Canadian federal government to return to Toronto. Davidi went on to say that the proposal has already received the green light at …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: 3 West teams Raps could trade with in the offseason

Toronto Raptors: 3 West teams Raps could trade with in the offseason

The Toronto Raptors will be better in 2021-22 than they were this year given the monsoon of misfortune that crashed down onto this team. Despite that, this front office knows that staying complacent is a good way to end up getting lapped by teams who took a more proactive approach to roster construction. With the […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 West teams Raps could trade with in the offseason – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Leafs look to put strangehold on series on second half of back-to-back

Less than 24 hours after securing a 2-1 series lead over the Montreal Canadiens, the Leafs will take to the ice again tonight for Game 4 of the series. A loss sends the Leafs back home with the series tied once again, but a win will pull the series victory to within striking distance and set up a date in the second round with the Winnipeg Jets.
Sheldon Keefe has a media availability at 5 p.m. so we won’t know until then if there will be any lineup changes (such as the return of Nick Foligno after his sudden absence last night) or who the starting goaltender will be. At this moment however, all signs point towards Jack Campbell playing.
Per Arpon Basu of The Athletic, the Canadiens have several game-time decisions to make, including Artturi Lehkonen. Head coach Dominique Ducharme wouldn’t reveal anything further than that. One thing that he did confirm however, was this:

“Yeah.” – Dominique Ducharme when asked if Carey Price is playing tomorrow night.
Refreshing.
— Arpon Basu (@ArponBasu) May 25, 2021

With that, let’s get to the expected lineups:
Lineups:
Toronto Maple Leafs

LW
C
RW

ZACH HYMAN
Rating: 74.6#33 LW

AUSTON MATTHEWS
Rating: 82.3#6 C

MITCH MARNER
Rating: 76.6#18 …

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Author: Dylan Murphy / The Leafs Nation

Leaflets: Some Leafs thoughts as we run out the final days of the regular season

I think the only hockey I dislike more than preseason hockey is the hockey played between the time that the Leafs clinch a playoff spot and the actual start of the playoffs. Other than Matthews hitting the 40 goal mark, there isn’t a storyline left, and we’re left collectively holding our breath whenever we see something like the Nick Foligno injury last night. At least with the preseason we’ve been deprived of hockey so long that we’ll take what we can get, but here we are 52 games down, and nothing left to do but clinch first in the North, which should happen soon. Anyways, here are some stray thoughts in the dog days of May.
Nick Foligno needs to sit
I don’t know the extent of his injury, whether he was held out precautionary, or whatever, but the time is now to get Foligno as close to 100% as possible before the playoffs. Shutting him down now would give him close to weeks to rest up for the playoffs, and even if he requires a game or two to start the playoffs off, I think you give it to him. There are plenty of players like Engvall …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Campbell vs. Andersen is not really much of a goaltender controversy

The are few story-lines lazier in hockey than the goaltender controversy. It’s essentially just the guy who wasn’t the opening night starter isn’t the best goaltender on the team anymore. That’s the situation for the Leafs as they have Jack Campbell now sitting at an incredible 15-2-1 record with a .927 save percentage, while Frederik Andersen has struggled with injuries and before that, consistency. Potentially the Leafs have two good goaltenders, and that’s called depth or options, not a controversy.
In the spirit of creating a goaltending controversy we asked the TLN contributors who would be their opening night starter. The answers are somewhat expected, but perhaps the expanded answers give a bit more context to how much we’d stick with our choice, or how we feel about Plan B, C, and D.
So here is who should start game one of the playoffs…
Michael Mazzei:
Jack Campbell. He is the more game-ready goalie and the guy that has played the best out of all the options up to this point. How long he keeps the crease in the playoffs depends on his performance because I imagine they would like to get Frederik Andersen …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

The Chronicles of Rittich: What does Big Save Dave bring to the Leafs?

The Chronicles of Rittich: What does Big Save Dave bring to the Leafs?

Is there any flashier acquisition than a backup goaltender? I mean, it seems like only last year the Leafs picked up a backup goaltender as a throw in when acquiring Kyle Clifford. I can’t quite remember how that worked out.
That’s not to say David Rittich will be the next Jack Campbell. In fact, David Rittich is decidedly not Jack Campbell. For one, he’s younger. He’s also played a lot more, having two seasons already in his career where he’s started the majority of the games for his team. He lacks the upside of Jack Campbell, but his lack of flash and steady presence isn’t a bad 1B to the goaltending tandem for the remainder of this season, and a solid option behind Frederik Andersen in the playoffs as he slips back into the tandem role with Campbell in May. Rittich is a pretty good safety net, and he could be an affordable tandem option with Campbell heading into next season as well, that the Leafs will start auditioning him for.
Big Save Dave by the Numbers
The most important place to start is with dissecting his .904 save percentage, which might be decidedly worse …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

The Maple Leafs have pushed their chips in on Nick Foligno. What Does that Mean for the Club?

With the NHL Trade Deadline less than 24 Hours away, Kyle Dubas has made the biggest splash of “silly season” to this point with his acquisition of Nick Foligno from the Columbus Blue Jackets (alongside Stefan Noesen from the San Jose Sharks). In exchange, the Maple Leafs will send a first-round pick and a fourth-round pick to Columbus, while also sending a fourth-round pick to San Jose to retain some of Foligno’s salary. As such, with both Columbus and San Jose retain 50% on Nick Foligno’s deal, the Maple Leafs will only be responsible for paying 25% of the salary remaining on the upcoming unrestricted free agent.

TOR trades a first and two 4ths for Nick Foligno and Stefan Noesen. Though SJ
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) April 11, 2021

Immediate reactions were divisive at best and combative at worst, as paying a first-rounder for Nick Foligno in 2021 appears expensive at a glance. While averaging over 18 minutes a night with the sputtering Columbus Blue Jackets, Foligno has a paltry 16 points, 7 goals and 9 assists, in 42 games played. There’s a lot more to this move than just the boxcar stats, however, and it’s worth trying to understand what the Maple Leafs not only see in …

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Author: Jori Negin-Shecter / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: 3 contenders who could give the Raptors assets in a trade

Toronto Raptors: 3 contenders who could give the Raptors assets in a trade

The Toronto Raptors appear closer to selling than they have in years, as their eight-game losing streak has them looking at some of the top prospects in the 2021 NBA Draft instead of vying for a spot in the 2020-21 postseason.  With Kyle Lowry and Norman Powell trade rumors starting to really get kicked into […]
Toronto Raptors: 3 contenders who could give the Raptors assets in a trade – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Scott’s Thoughts: Mid-season report cards

We’re more than halfway through the season, and with that means we can start to hand out some report cards for the Leafs players based on their performance so far. Their grades will be waited by a combination of their performance, but also their expectations going into the season. The evaluations will be based on a combination of my own opinion as well as the numbers they’ve put up, so there’s a very good chance that you aren’t going to agree with every grade.
We have a lot to get through, so let’s get started.
Auston Matthews: A
Matthews had the expectations of the best player on our team, and he has performed as such so far this season, especially before his injury. He had a massive lead in goals before his injury allowed McDavid to catch up, and is also still an incredible playmaker. His underlying numbers are spectacular as well, with a 54.16% CF% and a 59.15% xGF% this season, and a 6.9 GAR (nice) this season. The only thing holding him back from getting an A+ is that his defensive game has taken a slight step back from last season, but that hasn’t hindered …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation