Blue Jays A affiliate Vancouver Canadians set to head south of the border for start of season

The Vancouver Canadians won’t be starting their season at the storied Nat Bailey Stadium this summer.
The Canadians, who were the Jays Class A short season affiliate from 2000-2020 before being promoted to High-A this year, will start their inaugural season in the new six-team High-A West League south of the border.
The C’s will play home games in Hillsboro, Oregon to begin the new season, the club announced Monday morning.
“The Vancouver Canadians Baseball Club is still hopeful to open our gates at Nat Bailey Stadium to welcome our great fans back to the ballpark in 2021. The health and safety of our fans, players, and staff continues to be our top priority. As an organization, we are working through plans to execute a safe return to Nat Bailey Stadium in addition to providing an alternative option for the games to be played. We are committed to sharing any updates with our fans as they become available.”
In previous years, the C’s season was only 76 games long, and the games were consistently sold out. Going to a game at the Nat on a hot summer day has become a staple for many Vancouver residents. With the higher …

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Author: David Quadrelli / Blue Jays Nation

Maple Leafs lose second-straight to Canucks – Rate That Leafs Game

Again, the Toronto Maple Leafs lose to the Vancouver Canucks. It wasn’t the best game for Toronto, but it also wasn’t one of their worst games of the season. They had 39 shots on Thatcher Demko, who really stole the game for the Canucks.
However, I don’t want to sit here and say the Maple Leafs couldn’t have played better because they could have. A lot of sloppy plays in their end and in Vancouver’s end which resulted in either a goal for the Canucks or a missed opportunity for Toronto.
All in all, not the best game but now they get to go home, get some rest and prepare for the Winnipeg Jets. I hope you enjoy the video!

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Maple Leafs lose 3-1 to the Canucks – Rate That Leafs Game

As the Maple Leafs entered a back-to-back against the Vancouver Canucks, one thing was certain — it was going to be a tough game for Toronto. And that it was.
They struggled to score on Thatcher Demko who made it really tough for the Leafs to get anything past him. He stopped 31 shots in a 3-1 win.
We also received some sad news shortly before last night’s game ended. Walter Gretzky, the father of Wayne Gretzky passed away at 82. In my video, I explain what kind of impact he’s made on the game of hockey. His legacy will always be remembered and Walter was someone who grew the game immensely. Rest in peace, Walter Gretzky.
I hope you all enjoy the video.

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Matthews scores two again as Leafs dominate the Can-sucks

The Leafs had a dominant game against Vancouver on Thursday, and they made sure not to disappoint again tonight, as they played another strong game on route to a 5-1 victory.
The Leafs started with another strong period against the Canucks, as they once again had the advantage in possession (62.69%) and scoring chances (59.94%), and it showed up in the goal department. First, they got another powerplay goal (their 15th of the season already) off of a Simmonds goal with a shot that looked a lot like a James van Riemsdyk net front goal.

I could watch this forever.
Wayne and Auston
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) February 7, 2021

After another power play that got no results, Matthews put the Leafs up 2-0 with a goal so filthy I looked behind me to make sure no one would see me watching it.

Matthews just ended Chatfield’s career
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) February 7, 2021

The Canucks got their first big chance of the game early in the second as Pettersson got a chance with a wide open net, but a bad bounce saw him fan on the shot.

Pettersson had an open-net. What a shame. …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Jason Spezza is pure vintage after scoring 3 goals – Rate That Leafs Game

So, uh, yeah — Jason Spezza had a hat-trick against the Vancouver Canucks. There was no shy of brilliance in this game by the Toronto Maple Leafs, who put seven goals past Thatcher Demko. Auston Matthews had a pair, while Mitch Marner and John Tavares scored the others.
This was one of the best games for the Maple Leafs. Dominant from start to finish. Obviously there are a few tweaks here and there, but a solid performance (even though it was against a team that is struggling. Hard.) The unfortunate part from this game is that Travis Dermott left it and did not return.
Now though, we look forward (after you watch my YouTube video) on the next two games against — you guessed it — the Canucks. I hope you enjoy the video, and if you do, subscribe!

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Jason Spezza Hat-Trick in 7-3 Win over Vancouver

Toronto defeated Vancouver 7-3 today in a dominant display of offense.
The Leafs scored early, scored often, and most importantly, scored at even strength. That is a formula for success in any game, especially when you cannot always rely on consistent officiating. I will limit this to one gripe, and that is the uncalled boarding on Kerfoot:

No call for this hit by Chatfield on Kerfoot. Directly into numbers on a vulnerable player into boards
— NHL Safety Watch (@NHLSafetyWatch) February 5, 2021

On to the positives though, this is Jason Spezza’s world and we are all just living in it.

Spezza snipe #LeafsForever
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 5, 2021

What is so deceptive about this goal is that Spezza constantly uses the fake slap pass, building up his reputation just to lower opposing goaltenders guards.

Sauce and snipe #LeafsForever
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 5, 2021

Nic Petan made a case for himself staying in the lineup, showing his hockey IQ by passing to ‘free points’ sign, Jason Spezza.

— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 5, 2021

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Author: Earl Schwartz / The Leafs Nation

Practice Shenanigans: Kerfoot returns, Engvall hurts Sandin, Petan cracks the fourth line

The Leafs are nearing the end of a five-day break and are set to host the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday. Today’s practice saw quite a lot of things happen, so let’s break it all down.
After missing practice on Tuesday for what appeared to be an ailment, Alexander Kerfoot returned to the main group and restored balance in the universe.

Alex Kerfoot is on the ice ahead of #Leafs practice, in a regular white sweater.
He missed yesterday’s practice with an ailment of some sort.
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) February 3, 2021

Sheldon Keefe told reporters that Kerfoot was listed as day-to-day so it makes sense that he wouldn’t be out for long if he were to miss Thursday’s game. It appears that whatever was bothering him is now just a memory and should return to his usual spot as the third-line centre.
Sandin leaves early because of Engvall
Rasmus Sandin said he’s been getting frustrated with not drawing into the Leafs’ lineup through the first ten games. Taking a puck to the face and exiting practice prematurely doesn’t help matters.

Rasmus Sandin leaving #Leafs practice early after Pierre Engvall got him in the face …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

All-Canadian Preview: The Vancouver Canucks got worse this off-season

The Vancouver Canucks’ breakout might be short-lived.

The team put together a strong regular season showing in 2019-20, going 36-27-6 and earning a spot in the expanded playoffs and came just one win shy of reaching the Western Conference Final after an impressive run.
But after some major losses over the off-season, the Canucks look primed for a step backwards.
What happened last season…
36-27-6 (78 points), 4th in Pacific Division
Goals For: 228 (8th of 31), Goals Against: 217 (17th of 31)
5-10-0 vs Canadian opponents
1-2-0 vs CGY, 2-2-0 vs EDM, 1-1-0 vs MTL, 1-1-0 vs OTT, 0-2-0 vs TOR, 0-2-0 vs WPG
Looking back at it, the Canucks had the most successful 2019-20 of any of the Canadian teams.
Their regular season was a bit of a roller coaster, featuring a very hot start, a terrible slide in November, some major challenges with injuries, and a couple of huge winning streaks. They were a bubble team when the league got paused in mid-March and ended up with a playoff spot thanks to the field getting expanded.
From there, Vancouver took down the Wild in four games, beat the defending Stanley Cup champions, the …

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Author: Cam Lewis / The Leafs Nation

Draft preview with Yahoo! Sports

The 2019 NHL Draft goes down tonight in Vancouver and Cam Lewis joined Yahoo! Sports to discuss what to expect from the Toronto Maple Leafs. With the Leafs not having a first-round pick, what can expect on draft weekend?

The Leafs have many issues in front of them this off-season. The major domino for the team is Mitch Marner, who is currently a restricted free agent. General manager Kyle Dubas has a handful of bad contracts like Nikita Zaitsev and Patrick Marleau to deal with before anything else gets done. What can we expect to see?
Check it out below:

It’s NHL Draft day!@ailishforfar and @cooom address the biggest question out there: What about the Maple Leafs?
— Yahoo Sports Canada (@YahooCASports) June 21, 2019

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Author: Nation World HQ / The Leafs Nation

Leafs willing to part ways with Kadri and Kapanen

With the 2019 NHL Draft happening tomorrow in Vancouver, the Leafs are in constant discussion throughout the league and two key names have come up recently in trade talks.

Toronto Maple Leafs bracing for activity. Telling teams they will listen on Kapanen and Kadri. Would need a D back in a Kapanen trade and a centre back for Kadri. Strong sense Connor Brown could go as well.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) June 20, 2019

It was already going to be a wild couple of weeks for the Leafs — the possibility of a Marner offer sheet and negotiating with his team, as well as trying to improve at the draft — but now there will be more names added to those rumours.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, the Leafs will listen in on offers for forwards Nazem Kadri and Kasperi Kapanen.
In both of these deals, the Leafs will be looking for NHL players back, no future assets, according to Dreger. Toronto will be looking to fill their current hole on the blue line with a trade involving the 22-year-old Kapanen, while a centre will be the hopeful return for Kadri.
Kapanen is currently a restricted free agent, in need of his first contract after …

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Author: Thomas Williams / The Leafs Nation