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What if the Maple Leafs played a game and no one came?

Even in dreary times for the Maple Leafs, when the games left on the schedule don’t much mean anything any more (and the games in Calgary and Vancouver certainly didn't feel meaningful), there is always something happening.  Can you imagine a successful team having to suspend one of their top players, with the playoffs around the corner, for three games in March because of apparent maturity issues?


I’m not suggesting these things don’t sometimes happen to other teams.  All professional sports clubs have issues with players from time to time, especially young players trying to find their way, as it were. But it’s not a healthy sign, and not a positive indicator for the future when it comes the blue and white.

I don't want to focus on a particular player today. What’s the point? No one player is responsible for the current situation.  We are where we are because of a series of missteps and miscalculations on the part of ownership and management. It is what it is.

As fans, we’ve talked at length about leadership and team identity to the point where it has all been said. For his part, Shanahan can’t do much right now but let the season play out and continue to prepare for what will hopefully be a very different future for the organization.

My real question today is this:  when the last time you made a point of watching a Leaf came on television (or listening on the radio) from beginning to end?  If you had tickets given to you, are you still planning to go to the ACC?

I ask because, while the passion around the Maple Leafs is present twelve months of the year, the answer to those simple questions may reveal the kind of current fan indifference that ownership and management should not feel laissez faire about.

Frankly, more than ten years after the last playoff series win in Toronto, we have heard enough of the the rhetoric—all the talk, all the promises about culture and change.

It all just seems like noise.

Yet again we are reduced to talking about hope—and some possible future success.

Are you still following? Watching? Caring?


  1. Hi Michael,

    I am still here, caring about the Maple Leafs. Even though it doesn't appear to this fan that the majority of the team care about the games, I still do. I hope that the players, coaches, and management are embarrassed by the performance by the team this season. Lots, and lots of these guys need to go this offseason. It is a ringing indictment of this team that the players who were traded this season were more involved in the professionalism of this team than the players who remain.

    This is incredibly true of the supposed core of the Maple Leafs. You know the guys, the ones with the fancy letters on their sweaters. What in the holy hell is Tyler Bozak doing with an 'A' on his sweater? Has this franchise fallen this far? Where is the pride of being an NHL'er, let alone a Maple Leaf? I would expect children to have played harder for free, than the core of this team has played since Carlyle's departure.

    Kessel has scored fewer points since the calendar turned to 2015, than David Booth. When he isn't scoring, what exactly is his contribution to the team? We can talk about how management hasn't surrounded him with better players all you want. But, if he isn't a difference maker, why pay him the money like he is one? I am more than close to being tired of his antipathy, and cheering for him to be gone.

    I will always care about the Leafs. To be honest, I have no idea why. They have given me almost nothing but frustration and embarrassment over the last 40 years or so that I have been a fan. The only bright spots being the Gilmour years in the early 90's, and the Pat Quinn era, before Peddie got involved in the team.

    It will come as no surprise that I would like to see some changes to the team in the coming months. Both on the ice, and in the management suite. Guys who play like they want to be here, would be a wonderful start. Guys with talent, as well as will and skill, as you put it. I would also like to see ownership move heaven and earth to get the absolute best coaching and GM talent in the League. If Mike 'freaking' Babcock wants $10 million to coach here, give it to him. Bully other teams who have talented executives, over pay to bring them here. Offer them condos, or free food at Real Sports. I no longer care what the team has to do to be great. Do whatever it takes. But, if they hire one more good hockey guy, I swear, I am going to puke. ITS JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH. It's not good enough to talk about players we like, and executives who are good. Whatever happened to an organization that was committed to excellence? I do not care about Dave Nonis being a good guy, the team and its fans deserve the best. Not some mediocre paste eater.

    I have a lot of hope for the future of this team. In my opinion, Shanahan is trying to move the team forward without making the huge mistakes that have hamstrung this organization for what seems like an eternity. I will have an enormous amount of hope if the Leafs manage to come out of the first round of the draft with Connor McDavid. If the NHL rigs this lottery for Toronto, I would be so happy. Not only that, they owe the Leafs. Make it happen Bettman, or there will be trouble.

    What about you Michael? Where does your give a hope meter lie?

    1. I think for me, Jim, the enjoyment will have to be about watching to see if management can really begin to build a team with a roster of guys who, as you said, want to be and play here. It's too bad another re-build is necessary, but it can be done. The Cubs appear to have done it in baseball, selling/trading off virtually all their experienced talent since Theo Epstein took over a few short years ago. Now they are poised to be (it appears, at least on paper) a very competitive, young team.

      Adversity reveals something, I guess. And this team won't win in its current configuration. So an overhaul is overdue. Really gifted young players via the draft (hopefully with the kind of passion a Crosby brings) would be nice.

  2. I'm not sure I have 'made a point of watching' any particular game, yet I haven't missed any that I had a chance to watch (of course, I can't bring myself to listen to the intermissions, I have better things to do than listening to much that is 'spewed forth' in the current frame, but I have been watching the games).

    The real question for me is: Why do I still do that?

    And, I do know the answer. For me, it is about embracing the whole experience of ups and downs in life as though (in the bigger picture) they have a purpose in making me or establishing who I am at my core. I am not one to leave my friends when they're down, so why would I leave the Leafs who have also brought me moments of joy in the past?

    There is also that vicarious sense of participation we are embracing in our fandom - let alone realizing the value of in our life experiences of what it means to care about any short or long-term 'goal' for it's own sake (whatever that may be) - short of obsession, of course.

    If I always thought it would be easy to care about things that have their difficulties, challenges and downsides, I would never have risked failure in life (nor competed in 3 world championships)... you never have a chance to win if you're unwilling to count the cost and pay the price.

    (Leaf) Hockey is a passive, yet strangely participatory phenomenon (at least from an emotional and mental standpoint), so I am willing to be a part of the bad times in order that I might truly and fully enjoy the next cup... no jumping on the band-wagon (when it's easy) for me.

    I remember a quote about the strange interplay between the now and the not yet (respecting relationships) where the pain we feel at the departure or death of a loved one is because of the joy we have shared in the past.

    Sports can bring the opposite experience, where the pain we feel now will surely magnify the joy of the ultimate prize, if ever we're here to experience it with our team in the future. In the larger sense, this is a picture of our ultimate hopes and dreams in a life lived without 'giving up' hope respecting much more important rewards. Sports are a lesson, not the goal (in and of itself).

    How we cope through these down times is really a personal journey (whether in real life or our pastimes) that each will embrace in their own way... this is my perspective. I care about the growth, process and ultimate make-up of the team; I hope for the best growth opportunities for everyone; I don't presently care about meaningless wins; I care more about growth and finding the players who will embrace a mindset, integrity and strength that will be realized in the coming years in a way that will fill our hearts with the joy of accomplishment.

  3. I agree with Jim's sentiment, that there's a feeling right now that hard core Leaf fans seem more engaged with playing out the string than the team itself does. I actually feel bad for Horachek, and I wonder if in retrospect, he's thinking that this head coaching opportunity has damaged his career more than if another coach would have been awarded this rather dubious chance to shine. Looking at Peter on the bench, or grinding his teeth at post-game press conferences, it's pretty obvious that he's one of the few guys that gives a crap right now.

    Jim also rightly mentioned Bozak, he of the $21 million, 5-year contract, and a supposed leader of a once storied and respected franchise. How that combination of money and status can't elevate Tyler to play harder is beyond me. I certainly blame management mostly for offering him that ridiculous contract in the first place, but the bottom line is that he accepted it, and at the very least should leave everything out there on the ice, in terms of effort.

    Looking at the bigger picture, traditionally one of the silver linings of missing the playoffs in any sport is having your team play that role of the much hated spoiler, but this Leafs team seems to have turtled completely, and not embraced that concept. Vancouver and Calgary would have been fantastic chances to 'stick the knife' into a bubble playoff team, and show that the Leafs roster collectively has some personal pride. They basically chose to get rolled over, in both games.

    There's the whole "Tank Nation" mantra that's permeated the Toronto marketplace, where fans and media alike act giddy as the losses pile up, and the prospect of a higher draft pick presenting itself. I personally despise that philosophy, and think it breeds a long term malaise that's hard to recover from. Look at Calgary at the start of the season, where most considered them bottom feeders, and pretty much everyone ranked the Leafs roster as having more potential. Calgary's young core didn't care what anyone thought, and they gave the Flames fan base (or hockey lovers in general) a heck of a ride this year. If they end up missing the playoffs, I highly doubt their fan base will be whining that they should have played disinterested, season wasting hockey, to secure a higher draft pick. People that paid a decent price to attend those Flames 3-goal comeback games have memories that will surpass sitting and watching a draft lottery on TSN or Sportsnet.

    1. I guess it's natural for fans to kind of hope the Leafs finish low enough in the standings to get a high pick, Russ, but I understood your thoughts on 'tanking'. I can't imagine players think that way (many of them won't be here next year, anyway, and many are playing for future NHL jobs..). They have too much pride. But something has sapped the will from this team. And while Horachek absolutely is doing everything he can, management may well be hoping the team slides even further in the standings. Thanks Russ.

  4. As long as there exists any Leaf fan that must get in his game or two Leaf fix and purchase scalped tickets every season we will have same result. There are enough of these people to support this farse, this piece of entertainment garbage that is part religion. Toronto Maple Leafs generate gross revenue in 3 years over 100 million over next closest profitable team Montreal Canadiens 4 years ago. Leafs are the NHL. If Leafs had a game and no one came, if Leafs went through that waiting list of season ticket holders (so large and so long will take a generation or two to get through) and no one came, then and only then would Rogers act, i.e. remove hard cap salary system, contraction of teams down to 16-20, reduce regular season games, reduce playoff qualifiers, reduce playoff rounds. We are the problem, we pay for a horrifically diluted product, over 4 figures (for two) to watch over 50% AHL players. We are the NY Yankees with Chicago Cubs result.

    1. Hi Walter- yes, when fans accept a middlish product and pay high prices for it, what's the message?

      Your comments triggered memories of purchasing season's tickets back in the mid-1970s up in the old greys at Maple Leaf Gardens. As is the case today, there was a waiting list for the best seats (reds, and greens), I believe, but for some reason a few season's tickets must have been turned in that year. The greys only cost four dollars a seat, so a friend and I ran down to the Gardens and were excited to be able to purchase seats for the season!

      We put our name on the waiting list for seats in the greens. By then years had passed, I had left the Toronto area and it wasn't realistic to get to games. I let the opportunity pass. Thanks Walter.


    2. As the late Harold Ballard once said: "It doesn't matter if you are playing a game of hockey, baseball, football, tennis, volleyball or jacks, you can always draw a crowd in Toronto (words to that affect)." It doesn't matter how bad the team is or how much the tickets cost, people will still come out to watch hockey because they love the game. It's part of our culture and appeals to both sexes. Believe it or not, there ARE fans like me who put a game of shinny at any level above winning. We love the action, the speed, the competition; living vicariously, pulling for the players we know and yes, even the underdog. I admit to not being able to afford the price of NHL tickets today, but thank God for television. Sure, winning is great but the game is the thing. I do not let perceived player and management weaknesses bother me, or spoil my fun...They are paid to do a job that, in all honesty, I am not qualified to do any better myself. At least that is the way I look at it anyway. I'm kind of odd that way I guess.

    3. Hi Dick- the Leafs will always have support, no doubt. Many of us have followed the team for decades, despite a lack of recent "success".

      I just wonder if we have hit another level of fan indifference?

  5. I'm still watching, Michael, though I wish the effort in the first period would improve. It seems that most teams know that all they need to do is out-play the Leafs and score a few in the first and then coast their way to a win.

    I like sports where speed is a factor-- snowboard cross, ski cross, short-track or a Redbull Crashed-ice competition--but I could never sit through a basketball game. If they could run faster, or better yet, put on a pair of skates...hmmm. As Dick Wright wrote above, there's no other sport that compares to hockey-- a team sport that depends on both skill and speed--and it's the only one I can watch at least once a week. I'm trying very hard to get over my bitter disappointment and simply enjoy hockey as long as the game is close. Marlies games, which would be some consolation, aren't an option in my area unless they make the playoffs. I can stream those.

    Tickets would likely go to my boys. I've only been to two games myself--one at the old Maple Leaf Gardens in the 70's with my Dad and one at the ACC with two tickets we were gifted--It was fun and something my kids have never experienced. I would never turn down the offer of free tickets, even now.

    1. Thanks Colleen- you reference going to a game with your Dad at the Gardens years ago. MLG was a special place, for sure. The feeling entering the building is something that is hard to describe.

    2. Thanks for mentioning the Gardens, Colleen, as that's where all my valued live hockey memories come from. My Dad was in the aluminum picture frame business, where he bought aluminum from Alcan Metals, and they had a box at the Gardens. That not only got me into a catered executive suite as a high school student a bunch of times, but also landed me a pair of front row golds a couple of times a season in the early 90's. All those freebies disappeared in the late 90's sadly, when the move to the ACC made tickets a bit too rich to be doling out to some high school kid from Midland, Ontario. During that time, I got to see one game from the 1993 playoff series against the St. Louis Blues, and Curtis Joseph just got shelled by the Leafs that night. I was also there for Gretzky's last game at MLG, the only time I ever saw him live.

      Michael, you are spot on about the feeling entering MLG. Buying and cherishing a program in those days meant a ton, as there wasn't internet images and stories available on a daily basis. It actually offered glossy coloured pictures! There were also all the old photographs lining the walls of MLG, where you could just eat popcorn, taking in the history, and waste time until the game started. I probably remember that popcorn being a lot better than it actually was, as it wouldn't have tasted that amazing on the couch at home.

      I laughed today listening to Leafs Lunch on TSN, where the guys played a short audio clip of a well respected Premier League soccer commentator, just spewing venom about the home squad, and using language that's similar to what the Leafs are getting heaped upon them these days. While the soccer team was getting pummelled, apparently police were trying to protect the head coach from getting assaulted by a group of deliriously angry season tickets holders. The head coach was fired the next day (today)..... probably for his own protection. The reason the TSN guys were playing the clip was obviously to draw a parallel to our situation here in Toronto, and to offer the perspective that we're certainly not the only miserable fan base.

      Nothing wrong with us sharing a few memories, while we wait for the Leafs to make some new ones.

    3. I spent countless hours roaming the Gardens back in the early '70s, Russ, just looking at the great old photos. Great memories.

  6. To be at the old Gardens was something I never forgot. An 8-1 win topped it off. We were also there in the summer just before the summit series. My Dad talked to Harry Sinden that day. Even almost empty, the atmosphere in that old building was amazing and even more noticeable in the quiet. It's like entering an old church at night. It's a building that had known championship teams. I wonder if that feeling is still there if we entered it today. Have you been there since it closed, Michael?

    I know viewership is down but, other than season ticket holders staying home, I don't see a time where the ACC isn't filled. They could fill a much bigger arena. Fans want their children to experience an NHL game. Most can't afford it so if the opportunity arises whether it's more tickets becoming available or free tickets, they are going. I can see that lower attendance would send a strong message-- that's easy for someone to say who can go to games regularly--but, for many families, right now may be their best chance of finding tickets to go to see the Leafs at home and they may only get one chance. (I don't fancy going to Ottawa myself.)

    1. Unfortunately I haven't been to the Gardens since the Leafs left, Colleen.

      I was there in the old days even when the Leafs weren't in town and you're right, any time of year, the place had a special feel.

  7. Colleen and Michael, you might be interested in a piece written by Dave Perkins a few years ago. It is an excellent description of what the "House that Smythe Built" looks and feels like today. I've been there and felt the ghostly presence of a great Maple Leafs winning tradition still hovering in the Carlton Street structure...The ghosts of Hap Day, King Clancey, Syl Apps, Teeder Kennedy, Turk Broda, Punch Imlach, et al , did not accompany the team to Air Canada Centre.

    Talk about a castle in the sky, and no, this isn’t about overpriced stocks or the fanciful dreams that this phrase inspires. The real thing is a spiffy new 2,796-seat arena, called Mattamy Home Ice, located on the same footprint where the old Maple Leaf Gardens ice surface used to be, except maybe 50 feet up, starting about where the green seats used to begin. It’s under the same old corner-girdered roof, now spritzed white after the decades of increasing brown, a lid instantly recognizable to anyone who visited before the old joint closed up as a hockey shop in 1999.

    Loblaws bought the arena in 2004. In 2009 it announced the building would become the athletic home of Ryerson University...

    It’s really worth seeing, bright and spacious and comfortable with the new/old look of, say, a reconditioned jukebox. It has a couple of corporate boxes and an alumni suite, plus some standing room at one end. There are plenty of pictures of old-time Leaf heroes scattered about, plus images of the building and neighbourhood back when.In another part of what is called the Mattamy Athletic Centre, there’s a basketball/volleyball court, sponsored by Coke, with 1,000 pull-out bleacher seats. Another area holds a full-size fitness centre open to Ryerson’s 26,000 students, plus the university community.
    Good for Ryerson and good for Mattamy Homes, whose head man, Peter Gilgan, contributed $15 million of the $71 million cost. They recognized the opportunity to do something good here and turned a deserted Canadian sporting, if not cultural, landmark into a contributing piece of a fast-growing Canadian university.

    Yet nobody can officially say the words Maple Leaf Gardens around the place and that’s the crazy part. Not long ago Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment sued Ryerson to prevent anyone from calling Maple Leaf Gardens by its real name. There’s one reference allowed, on the marquee hanging out over Carlton St., because the place is on the national register of historic landmarks and also because of city record-keeping.

    The profiteers at MLSE were concerned that having the name used would somehow damage the brand — as if their stewardship hadn’t already turned a national institution into a laughingstock. (This had nothing to do with trying to excise memories of the pedophilia scandal that scarred the franchise and building in its latter years; this was about protecting MLSE’s right to make money.)

    MLSE didn’t want Loblaws to build anything that would “compete” with the Air Canada Centre, insisting on non-competition clauses. When you look at MLSE teams, you understand the organization knows about non-competitiveness. It’s a long shot, but MLSE’s new majority owners could dissociate themselves from the previous regime simply by apologizing for the lawsuit and saying they recognize their team’s heritage and would be proud if the old box of bricks were known forever as Maple Leaf Gardens. Also, please paint the logo back on the roof, the one we made you scrape off, and let us help decorate. Such an easy move would be great public relations for an organization that badly needs some and wouldn’t it cost a dime.

    Ryerson might tell them to take a hike, of course. They and their new sponsors have a good thing here, a small jewel in a building we’ll always know by its real name, no matter what the lawsuits say.

    1. Thanks, Dick. Until I read your post I hadn't stopped to think what had become of the building. It has been years since I saw it but is still so fresh in my mind.

  8. As I'm sure it is for most of us here, it'll always be known as Maple Leaf Gardens to me

    Just like the SkyDome will always be the SkyDome and the O;Keefe Centre will always be the O'Keefe Centre.


  9. I guess I'm in the minority. A lifelong Leafs fan, the organization has finally driven me away. I no longer watch games, or even really care about the outcome. I loathe the "tank nation" drivel we're subjected to. A high draft pick guarantees absolutely nothing in hockey. I've completely lost faith in Leafs' ownership, management, and players. I've never seen a team who seemed to care less about the game, or each other. In fact, just as the collapse against Boston is now the reference low-point for losing a game, this year's team has set the bar so low, they've become my reference point for how bad a team can be. (And believe me, that's saying something if you lived through the 70's and 80's with the Leafs). You can't give tickets away - I know, because I've tried.
    From my glass-totally empty-and-put-back-on-the shelf perspective, Leaf fans have been betrayed by ownership and management, delivering a subpar product year after year, very much in the "Ballard" mode. (When asked why he didn't ice a more competitive team in the early 70's, Ballard is reputed to have said "Why? I can't make more money!") I firmly believe that a sports team needs one passionate owner to succeed, and that a board of warring governors who are more an investment company than a sports company can only spell continued mediocrity.
    Leaf fans exhibit the same famous patience that Toronto drivers do, when confronted by continually construction-gridlocked streets. Maybe it's the weather that gives us such fortitude!

    1. Well said, Gerund, and your name certainly sounds ready for St. Patrick's Day! The "Tank Nation" mantra bothers me a whole bunch, for reasons that vary from ticket prices in Toronto, to it just being ideologically flawed. I think developing talent is Job #1 for any professional sports franchise, and drafting young, elite players means nothing if they never get a sniff at their true potential. Look at the Red Wings, about to enter their 24th consecutive season in the playoffs. They obviously weren't bottom feeders in the draft in the past two decades, but they had intelligent scouting, patience, and an elite system for developing talent. Did Detroit have some crappy years? Sure, but their streak of 24 years in the playoffs shows that there's a way to set the bar high for an NHL team, without being basement dwellers forever.

      I agree with you Gerund, regarding the multi-headed media conglomerate that the current ownership group is. How can anything positive come out of two fiercely competitive media companies, pretending to work hand-in-hand towards a common goal? The entire concept is broken, and the results validate the flawed premise.

    2. The Tank Nation hopefulness reminds me of the Jim Carrey character in Dumb and Dumber who replies to the 1 chance in a million 'blow off' with his now-famous line "so you're saying there's a chance." It seems (or at least 'feels') like the hope for a high draft pick is the only positive we can take from this season... perhaps we can become as famous as the ever-hopeful Lloyd.

      If nothing else, I hope we can determine if there are any keepers in the present squad who are able to show some heart while those around them fail... of course, a relatively high draft pick is a given at this point, so we can watch him develop over the coming years, unless we land McDavid in the lottery... 'so you're saying there's a chance' - and it is actually higher than what was offered to Lloyd :) if we stay in the top 5 (see how positive that sounds)!

    3. Hello InTimeFor62,

      I must confess that I am a little impatient for this season to come to an end so we can see how the Leafs do in the Draft Lottery and the trading of the current "core" can begin.

      As regards to the draft lottery. It would be a dream come true to be able to draft McDavid, but if the Leafs aren't that lucky (when have they been that lucky in the past 47 years?), being able to draft Dylan Strome would be fantastic to!

      I see Dylan Strome as the kind of player the Leafs could start building around. He could go back to junior for another year or two then join William Nylander on the Marlies. In the mean time, the Leafs would have a chance to evaluate ALL their current prospects and see if anyone is worth keeping to move forward with.

      I don't know that all the under 25 group I advocated for before are going to be here for the long run, but next year will be the start of their true evaluation period. If things look as bleak next year as they currently do now, the rebuild stretches from 3 - 5 years to 5 - 7 years. Sigh...


  10. Sorry to hear about that Gerund. How are you filling the void in your life these days? I agree that hockey (all sports for that matter) is strictly big business with an all-imposing bottom line and for that very reason don't look for a Stanley Cup parade down Yonge Street any time soon. No one invests in a professional sports team to loose money. Shrewd (not passionate) management, and a lot of luck, is what is required in a successful sports franchise in this day and age, What business today can justify a payroll that consists of 15 to 20 employees all making in excess of $2 million a year? Sadly, NHL expansion in the past couple of decades, has diluted the talent pool and has made it possible for teams like Toronto and Buffalo to fill out rosters and ice lineups with 70 per cent sub-par players...and still play before capacity audiences. I don't give Toronto fans credit for patience...I just think they are eternal optimists who like entertainment -- good or bad.

  11. hi michael,

    i am following the leafs in the standings but not watching the games. this season is now officially a wash, so i'm just hoping for a decent draft-pick. this past summer i thought they leafs would've been fighting for a wild-card place at least... the team looked good on paper, but i'm no stats genius!

    honestly, the leafs contending in the next 3 years would be shocking... i'm realistically looking at 5 more years of scraping the bottom to help fill the cupboards with picks and prospects, and the right coaches behind the bench.

    let's see what happens!

    1. It may take a while, but hopefully fans will be able to see progress and some young talent being properly developed. Thanks Alex.

  12. Hi Michael,

    of course I am caring!!!!

    And I am still following too. As much as I did before.
    But I have to admit that I am very annoyed, bugged and fatigued by the things I have to follow.
    I have to read and listen to the same bad things on and on again. I am not posting as much as I used to here in the last few month because the situation really gets on my nerves.

    And then I read some outlooks for the future, Myrtle is suggesting to build around Gardiner and Kadri, well, that will bring guaranteed "success". And somebody else listed the possible replacements for next year by simply copying the Marlies roster, with the result that there are very few guys that can be good NHLers eventually but will need developing at least for one more season in the minors (Nylander, Brown, Percy) and a large group of border line NHLers or Minor leaguers for life. Somebody has to play next year!!! Really Play!

    There are a lot of people that talk about numbers, but being honest and realistic, nobody can say how many years they will need to build a contender and if their aproach will be succesful.
    The 3 to 4 years I hear so often are only a dream. Perhaps it will take ten years to set everything in order.

    I agree with all my fellow VLM posters who think tanking is a disgrace! And it will guarantee you nothing! But you really have to be careful that you don't learn to lose as an organization because it is very difficult to step out of it. Ask Edmonton. Hopefully this year wasn't to much already.
    Hat's of to Dick`s comment about "everybody is an expert", and then I have to read " they don't want to win before 2017(Myrtle)". Yeah right. But if you can switch winning on and off as ever you please why not switch to win now?

    As far as watching goes: I still watch because I want to know what is going on.
    But I live in Germany and you are 6 hours behind. So on a regular 7 pm game it is 1 am here. Usually at least on weekends I stay up and watch the games live. But in this situation I do not stay up to watch the first 4 goals against in the first 10 minutes. I watch the games later and sometimes only as long as I can stand the pain.

    Shanny, give us a Team that cares and at least shows up every night for 60 minutes. They won't make the Playoffs perhaps, but I want a Team with pride and fight in it, not a Team I have to be ashamed of.

  13. Hi Marcus. I had no idea you were living in Germany!

    When I see the hype starting, fans already so excited for a high pick we haven't got yet, I'm worried. It's still just one player, and a very young one. Even with two first round picks, there's a long way to go and I'm not crazy about an 18 year old kids playing in the NHL, especially with the expectations and pressures in Toronto. A center would be a good start but it hardly fixes everything. Not only did these season of evaluation not answer questions, it added more. Who do we keep beyond Rielly? Are we keeping certain pieces for another year or starting from scratch?

    I'm still watching too, hoping the games will be become more entertaining. The Marlies making the playoffs would be something at least.

    1. Hi Colleen,

      yes I do.

      Everybody says the draft is so deep and I read a few days ago that a lot of scouts are not sure if Dylan Strome will be a number 1 center. And he is projected to go top 5. How many picks do we have this year? Ten? How much time will they need to develop? And how much time will you need to have a real stock of prospects? 3 to 4 years? Absolutely not. And we do not have a lot of prospects now that will develop into decent NHLers. And we don't have a lot of young players on our team to build around. I am worried too.
      Because of the hype. Because of the state the Leafs are in. It is really terrible. And we do not know if it will ever work. Everybody in the press acts like there is a recipe that will work,but there isn't. And I do not agree with trading everyone. Completely agree with the things you said Colleen. I hope the Marlies will make the Playoffs.
      You have summer time but we are still on winter time for a week so the diffrence is only 5 hours. I have a game tonight so I will be home about half an hour before gametime. In other words I will watch at least the start of the game live, lets hope they will have a good game for a change.