Leafs by the Numbers: Justin Holl

Justin Holl is a true feather in the cap of the Leafs organization when it comes to finding talent, developing players, and helping them reach their top potential. After being plucked from Chicago’s ECHL affiliate, the former 2nd round pick put in three years of solid work with the Marlies, and found his way to the NHL.
Holl didn’t seem to be a favourite of Mike Babcock, which is somewhat amusing given that we now know that Holl will do anything and everything asked of him, and after a frustrating long journey to the NHL, Holl had a solid season for the Leafs and earned himself a tidy little 3 year contract paying him $2M a season.
Through injuries and a complete lack of right shot defensemen last season, Holl found his way onto the second pairing for the Leafs, and developed a level of familiarity with Jake Muzzin, and that leads us to Holl’s number.
Justin Holl’s number is 4. The biggest question for him in 2021 is whether he can hold on to his spot in the Leafs top four.
Jumping from a situation where Holl was healthy scratched in all but 11 games to a situation where …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Discourse: Independent Media in the NHL Bubble

It’s not often we have a true difference of opinion within the writers group of our humble little blog, but the level of access of independent media within the NHL Hub Cities seem to be one of those issues that we have drastically different opinions on. With that in mind, we thought we should make sure we respectfully allow all points of view to be heard, since you know, we’re supposedly adults.
The background for those of you who haven’t been watching the online debate closely is that the NHL is allowing Team hired content providers and NHL.com writers to reside within the bubble with the players, giving them a decided advantage when it comes to producing stories, and arguably sanitizing the experience as it suits the interests of the league.
Independent media, in contrast, are required to set up shop at hotels without the players in them, and they will not have the same advantage as their league employed peers. Additionally those coming from the United States will have to quarantine for 14 days before being able to participate in the areas they will have access to.
Understandably given that background there is …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: How Norm Powell went about reaching new heights in 2020

The Toronto Raptors are starting to see Norman Powell’s true potential, as the 2019-20 season has been the best of Powell’s career to date. What are some reasons behind the UCLA product’s ascension this season? For Norman Powell, the 2019-20 season has been the most fruitful of his career, impressive considering how many times its […]
Toronto Raptors: How Norm Powell went about reaching new heights in 2020 – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jordan Skuse / Raptors HQ

The Toronto Raptors don’t need DeMar DeRozan any time soon

If the rumors are true, then DeMar DeRozan could well be on his way out of the San Antonio Spurs any day now. However, he is not the player the Toronto Raptors need right now. As a member of the Toronto Raptors, DeMar DeRozan likely goes down as one of the greatest of all-time. DeRozan […]
The Toronto Raptors don’t need DeMar DeRozan any time soon – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Thomas Valentine / Raptors HQ

Thoughts on Where the Blue Jays Go from Here After the Deadline

The one true trade deadline is gone, and so are 24% of the players who made up the Blue Jays 25-man roster last week. Marcus Stroman, Aaron Sanchez, Eric Sogard, Daniel Hudson, David Phelps, and Joe Biagini have all been traded for returns that have left the fanbase divided, but that is all in the past. The trades have happened and no amount of fighting over them will bring those players back or make the return any better, so the most useful thing at this point to do is to discuss where this team will go from here. After gutting the roster of the 2015-2016 playoff teams, which were some of the oldest teams in baseball, the tear down is complete, and the next phase is starting.
The Rest of the Season
With Stroman and Sanchez gone, the rotation will now all be made of young players looking to make an impression. With Ryan Borucki going on the disabled list, the rotation is now composed of Trent Thornton, Thomas Pannone, Sean-Reid Foley, and Jacob Waguespack, all pitchers who have made their MLB debut in the past calendar year. One more pitcher will be added to that group from the minor leagues …

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Author: Gideon Turk / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Blue Jays Midseason Odds & Betting Trends

by OddsShark (@OddsShark)
If it’s true that the best fans are the realists, then the Toronto Blue Jays are illustrating there are ways to find betting upside with a team in a down year.
First things first, the Blue Jays have moved from an opening +7500 on the 2019 World Series odds to +300000 at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. In American League East division champion odds, the Blue Jays, who are 23 games under .500 at the all-star break, have now moved from an opening +4000 to +350000.
Where that upside might come into play is win totals. After their 73-89 result in 2018, oddsmakers set the over/under for the Blue Jays’ win total in 2019 at 74.5, anticipating a preference for the UNDER, which was priced at -135 with the OVER at +105. The projection seemed high following a season where the Blue Jays put up a 4.85 earned-run average and did scarcely little to upgrade their pitching staff.
At the break the Blue Jays’ 34-57 record means they would have to go 41-30 over the duration of the season  – a more than 200 percentage point jump in their record – to hit the OVER. Given the team’s ERA is still 4.91 and both No. 1 starter Marcus Stroman and closer …

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Author: Nation World HQ / Blue Jays Nation