February 11 2016 10:39PM
Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
It's an ongoing joke that Toronto-born hockey players always step up when they face off against their hometown team, except no Leafs fans were laughing when local kid Connor McDavid lit them up for five points tonight in a 5-2 Edmonton win. That is unless you already joined the Tank Nation ranks and were actively rooting for Toronto to finally take sole ownership over 30th place in the league. If that's the case, then a big ol' salute to you, soldier. Mission accomplished.
February 09 2016 06:30PM
When news broke earlier today that Dion Phaneuf had been traded to the Ottawa Senators in a surprise nine-player deal, there weren't a lot of people concerned about Tobias Lindberg. It's understandable... Did Toronto retain salary? No? Ok, well who's coming to the Leafs? Michalek? Ok, and Cowen? Alright. Cool.
Lindberg's name, of course, was there. It was listed right beside that 2017 second round pick. But Lindberg wasn't one of the typical "main pieces" coming back, not worthy of a ton of initial discussion in the same way that nobody in Ottawa is getting all gung-ho about Casey Bailey or Matt Frattin or Cody Donaghey or Ryan Rupert.
The truth of the matter is that Lindberg, along with the draft pick, is the real return for Phaneuf. The rest is just money in, money out. So let's talk about the newest Leafs prospect and where he fits in.
February 06 2016 02:26PM
Major tank implications in the nation's capital tonight, folks. It's pretty incredible that six teams are currently tied with a league-low 47 points, including your Toronto Maple Leafs. Not only could a win pull Toronto out of the basement, but the Ottawa Senators sit only five points ahead of the Leafs, with the good guys still having two games in hand. There are not many things that bring more joy to Leafs fans than beating up on the Senators and rubbing it in the face of that one Ottawa fan you may or may not know, so it's shaping up to be a tough night for the more militant members of Tank Nation.
February 06 2016 09:33AM
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
This is a guest post from friend-of-the-blog Mike Commito.
Mike Commito is a policy analyst and hockey historian from Sudbury, Ontario. You can find him on the Royal Half where he writes as the Preview Professor. Follow him on Twitter... @mikecommito
I recently had the chance to chat with Nazem Kadri before Leafs practice on Friday afternoon and pick his brain about Darryl Sittler’s record-setting game from 1976, how he spent his All-Star break, and how the team’s play has improved this season with Mike Babcock behind the bench.
Mike Commito: So how did you spend the All-Star break?
Nazem Kadri: I went on vacation with a few of the guys, went out to Mexico, just tried to lay in the sun and enjoy ourselves a little bit. I think we came back a little re-energized and it was good for us.
Did you happen to catch any of the All-Star Game on Sunday or were you guys in full R & R mode?
We actually caught the majority of it in the airport, so we were fortunate enough to have it on TV and I enjoyed the format actually.
February 05 2016 06:52AM
Hey TLNers, and welcome to a new weekly special we'll be sending your way every Friday from here on out. It's the brand new TLN Report Card!
Here's the scoop. You will get to give a big thumbs up or big thumbs down to every player on the Toronto Maple Leafs roster. Yes! You! You get the power to judge professional athletes on their job performance! With just one click! Think of how good that will feel! And, as a community, we'll let the entire world know just how much we adore Mo Rielly, and how little we think of... Oh, I don't know... Roman Polak?
So, what do you think? Who do you like? Who do you not? Who impressed you this week? Who stunk? Who do you want to get a fat contract extension? Who would you like to throw into an active volcano?