Why this Leafs loss wasn’t close to the David Ayres game

Should the Toronto Maple Leafs have won that game? Sure, but they didn’t. A lot can be said about how the Leafs should’ve thrashed the Vancouver Canucks since they’re coming off their bout with COVID-19. Really though, the Canucks played a hell of a game.
Braden Holtby stood on his head (playing like a Vezina-winning goaltender), Bo Horvat scored two key goals for the team, and the Leafs just were unlucky. I’m okay with this loss because Toronto played good. They were not bad at all. Sometimes losses like this just happen.
Here are more of my thoughts — in video form. I hope you enjoy the video!

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Leafs face off against Canucks in their first game since Covid variant outbreak

I’m not going to lie, I’m very surprised that this game is happening tonight. Whether they gave them an extra week or just straight up ended their season, it still feels too soon for the Canucks to be coming into action considering everything we’ve heard about what they were dealing with, and what JT Miller said about the team’s status a few days ago.
It’s one thing if the team was in that typical hockey team mindset, just pumped up and ready to go to play some more games. But, they’ve made it very clear they don’t want to, and even some players family members have gotten the variant because of it. When players on the team like Travis Hamonic opted out of the bubble last year because his child was more vulnerable, this becomes an issue beyond more than just the game.
Even from a Leafs perspective, this must be a really weird situation to be in. You’re up against a team playing their first game in 24 days, and is probably not in the right conditioning to play a full 60 minute game against the best team in the division. If you …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Steven Matz was an ace, the bats fall asleep in the nightcap, Blue Jays split double header

That was quite a long day of baseball and we’re back to where we started!

Things worth mentioning…

Steven Matz continues to be extremely good, which was the big thing to draw from today. Matz made his third start of the season in the first game of the double-dip and flirted with a, abbreviated no-hitter, holding the Royals to fuck all until the sixth inning when Nicky Lopez hit a Royals-esque bloop single. Matz would end up going six innings, allowing one earned run on two hits while striking out five. His ERA is 1.47 and the Mets look stupid for giving him to the Blue Jays in exchange for a bag of magic beans.
The Blue Jays put up five runs on Mike Minor and the Royals, led by a Lourdes Gurriel first-inning double, Jonathan Davis’ first dinger (and hit) of the season, which was as big as Lake Ontario, and a bomb from Vlad.

Welcome to the Vladimir Guer-air-show #PLAKATA pic.twitter.com/MK8i9s6qTf
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) April 17, 2021

The second game was a bit limp-dick after the first, to be honest. Tommy Milone got the start and allowed a couple of runs over two-and-one-third …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: Is Khem Birch going to start a movement that gets Canadians to Toronto?

Toronto Raptors: Is Khem Birch going to start a movement that gets Canadians to Toronto?

Despite the fact that basketball is flourishing like never before in Canada, the number of Toronto Raptors Canadians remains comparatively small. While only a handful of Canadians, including Chris Boucher and Cory Joseph, have ever suited up in Raptors red and black, they added another one to the mix with the addition of center Khem […]
Toronto Raptors: Is Khem Birch going to start a movement that gets Canadians to Toronto? – 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 predictions: Best-case scenario core player comparisons

Toronto Raptors predictions: Best-case scenario core player comparisons

Part of the fun of having a young team again is that fans are able to daydream about what each of our players might one day become. If they aren’t finished products, then in the starry eyes of the optimistic fan, the sky is still the limit. Because of this, the Toronto Raptors predictions for […]
Toronto Raptors predictions: Best-case scenario core player comparisons – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Avishai Sol / Raptors HQ

Toronto Raptors: Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan’s heartfelt exchange will pump up Raptors fans

Toronto Raptors: Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan’s heartfelt exchange will pump up Raptors fans

The Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs are two franchises that will remain forever intertwined, as the Kawhi Leonard trade that brought Toronto their first championship in franchise history also sent the franchise’s all-time leading scorer in DeMar DeRozan to San Antonio as collateral. This broke up his partnership with Kyle Lowry. While DeRozan missed […]
Toronto Raptors: Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan’s heartfelt exchange will pump up Raptors fans – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Blue Jays Nation Radio Ep. 4: Another series win over the Yanks!

Boy oh boy, does that feel good!

After a difficult week, which featured back-to-back series losses, an injury-riddled Blue Jays squad hosted the New York Yankees and, yet again, came out with two of three wins.
Gerrit Cole was excellent in the opener, the bats woke up in the second game behind an amazing start from Hyun Jin Ryu, and then Bo Bichette powered the team to a win in the third game on Wednesday afternoon with a walk-off bomb. The Blue Jays are now 6-6 for the season, meanwhile, our pals in New York are in the American League East basement with a 5-7 record.
Time to panic in the Big Apple?!?! We welcomed Neil Keefe, a lifelong, diehard Yankees fan and writer, onto the show to talk about what’s going on with the Bombers right now. He went on a tangent about how frustrating the team has been over the past few years, how they haven’t addressed their pitching issues, and why he’s terrified of the Blue Jays moving forward.
All that plus a preview of this weekend’s series in Kansas City on the post-series episode of Blue Jays Nation Radio!
You can listen …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Raptors: One thing Rodney Hood could do to prove his worth to Nick Nurse tonight

Toronto Raptors: One thing Rodney Hood could do to prove his worth to Nick Nurse tonight

The trade that sent Norman Powell to the Portland Trail Blazers and Gary Trent Jr. to the Toronto Raptors also sent the expensive contract of Rodney Hood, who has been struggling to recapture his old scoring touch, to Nick Nurse and company. Hood suffered a torn Achilles in Portland, and it turned a former double-digit […]
Toronto Raptors: One thing Rodney Hood could do to prove his worth to Nick Nurse tonight – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Toronto Marlies games postponed due to COVID-19 protocols

The AHL announced today that three Toronto Marlies games (April 15, April 18 against Laval) and (April 21 against Belleville) have been postponed due to COVID-19 league protocols.
No make-up dates have been announced as of yet by the league.
The Toronto Marlies are 10-11-0-1 on the season and had 11 games left before the end of the year. More information on the Toronto Marlies will come whenever anything is released.

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

How can the Leafs fix their power play?

Alright, so that was an interesting game. For me personally, I’d say it was pretty boring, which it always seems to be against the Calgary Flames. David Rittich made his first start for Toronto facing off against his former team and it wasn’t bad.
Nick Robertson and Scott Sabourin also got into an NHL game again which was nice to see. But, really, the only thing that wasn’t nice to see was the Leafs power play because it stinks right now.
Here are my thoughts on both the game, and the power play:

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation