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Clearly, here in Toronto we have our own troubling civic issues involving high profile public figures we need to focus on. And may I say, as a 28-year employee of the Toronto Star, I've never been prouder. The fact Kevin... Continue reading
Posted Nov 1, 2013 at The Spin
In recognition of Garnet Exelby, the last Maple Leaf to wear this number in a game, here's seven thoughts on the club's sweep of Alberta: 1. Looking for room in a winning lineup: It's not entirely clear when Mark Fraser... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2013 at The Spin
Ten thoughts as the Maple Leafs open a western Canadian road swing with a victory in Edmonton: 1. Put your feet up, son. Take a load off: There aren't many players in the NHL who are assigned the same tough... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2013 at The Spin
There's no escaping this storyline for John Tortorella and Alain Vigneault. Of course, at this point, only Vigneault would want to. In a hockey tale worthy of the Fritz Peterson-Mike Kekich wife-swapping chapter in Yankee baseball history - actually, the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 29, 2013 at The Spin
We have a date. And, so we are told, this one's written in stone. Steve Moore will finally get his day in court in his $38 million lawsuit against Todd Bertuzzi and the Vancouver Canucks on Sept. 8, 2014, more... Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2013 at The Spin
Pretty much as advertised. David Clarkson, actually, looked much better in general in returning to the Maple Leaf lineup in Columbus on Friday night than he did during the pre-season, which isn't all that unusual for a guy who plays... Continue reading
Posted Oct 26, 2013 at The Spin
It shouldn't end this way for Martin Brodeur. As the backup to an as-yet-unproven goalkeeper on what may be the worst New Jersey Devils team ever. And, Mickey Mouse past acknowledged, that's saying something. Having looked across the river and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 25, 2013 at The Spin
There are goons, and there are rats. Rarely do you get both in one hockey player. But the Buffalo Sabres, a franchise fallen on very hard times, have such a player. A goon rat in Sabres clothing, as it were.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 24, 2013 at The Spin
Ten thoughts on the weirdest game of the season so far for the Leafs, a 7-3 team with a reinforcement named David Clarkson now on the way: 1. Sometimes we forget the important stuff: It's no surprise it didn't come... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2013 at The Spin
Some Monday morning musings: 1. Boy, Otis Taylor must be having a heck of a year: It's been easy to forget over the past, oh, four decades that the Kansas City Chiefs were once an NFL powerhouse driven by a... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2013 at The Spin
In honor of Norm Ullman, here's nine thoughts on the second Leaf loss of this young season: 1. Say thanks to Stevie Y for this one: Cam Ward is undoubtedly still seething over not even being invited to the Canadian... Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2013 at The Spin
Ten observations on the Maple Leafs' 4-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night: 1. As previously suggested, this goalie battle is going to go on for a long while. People are seriously underestimated both James Reimer's talent and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2013 at The Spin
There is such a thing as the irresistible tide of history. It may temporarily lose its force. It may recede for a time. But eventually, it moves forward once more. Over the course of the last century, such was the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2013 at The Spin
Sure, it's early. But to use that answer after every question about every NHL team is to totally discount either good starts or bad starts as indicative of the quality of various squads. Sometimes, a good start is evidence of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2013 at The Spin
NASHVILLE--So the first round goes to Jonathan Bernier. Bernier is expected to be the first goalie to start consecutive games tonight for the Maple Leafs when they face the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena, the first indication that either he... Continue reading
Posted Oct 10, 2013 at The Spin
The Maple Leafs knew coming into this season that being a hardhitting, gloves-dropping, grinding team is what ended a nine-year playoff drought last spring. Yet, these things are so easy to forget. So not that Randy Carlyle was looking for... Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2013 at The Spin
The Philadelphia Flyers have gone nearly as long as the Maple Leafs since winning their last Stanley Cup, but not because they are similar franchises that have stumbled in similar ways. In fact, the unusual part about Philly being unable... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2013 at The Spin
There are three reasons why there won't be a decision anytime soon on which netminder is No. 1 with the Maple Leafs. One, and most important, Randy Carlyle doesn't want there to be. Two, this is the kind of decision... Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2013 at The Spin
There are many differences between the Phil Kessel negotiations, just concluded, and the upcoming discussions over a new deal for Dion Phaneuf. The main one? The Leafs had no ready replacement for Kessel if he had chosen to walk out... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2013 at The Spin
PHILADELPHIA--No surprise. The team that led the NHL in fighting last season isn't interested in having players ejected for dropping the gloves. "No, I'm not in favour of that," said Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis today. "I'd oppose giving... Continue reading
Posted Oct 2, 2013 at The Spin
MONTREAL--The Maple Leafs might have been able to call the shots this fall when it came to negotiating new contracts for Nazem Kadri and Cody Franson. But not Phil Kessel. Kessel, who turns 26 tomorrow, had all the leverage in... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2013 at The Spin
Of course you keep Morgan Rielly. We knew that two weeks ago. First of all, right now he's as good as anyone else who could occupy the No. 7 slot on the Leaf defence, whether its T.J. Brennan or John-Michael... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2013 at The Spin
After all the fretting about how in the world the Maple Leafs were possibly going to fit Nazem Kadri and Cody Franson under the salary cap, turns out Dave Nonis' hardnosed this-is-all-we've-got approach worked just fine. Now we'll see how... Continue reading
Posted Sep 26, 2013 at The Spin
So the fallout from Sunday night's pointless brawling gets interesting on Tuesday morning. Nobody, but nobody, objected to David Clarkson getting 10 games on Monday. It was automatic for leaving the bench to join a fight. Nothing could really be... Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2013 at The Spin
Man, they have games like that they're going to need to build bigger stadiums and the TV ratings are going to go through the roof. Two of the toughest, fiercest teams in the sport, both now and by tradition, hammering... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2013 at The Spin