A little bit of everything – TheLeafsNation

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Hey there hockey gossip fans, hope the past week has been treating you well. Hockey drama is at a bit of an all time high these days, with firings, player social media habits, COVID response, and more. Of course, our own Toronto Maple Leafs remain at the centre of it all, as usual, because they are the centre of the hockey world, as we all know. Let’s take a gander around the league, shall we?

Leafs Lads

Captain John Tavares is expanding his hockey footprint, as he and buddy Sam Gagner are the proud new papas of a hockey team.

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That’s right, the Leafs captain is the new owner of the Toronto Marlboros. JT seems to be setting himself up for a long commitment to hockey – perhaps a fun little project for when he retires? Investing in the Toronto hockey scene like this certainly indicates that he plans to be a Leaf for the duration of his career, wouldn’t you think?

Meanwhile, coach Sheldon Keefe had a hilarious reaction during media availability recently, when he was asked how he would respond to a certain reporter (*cough Steve Simmons cough*) comparing William Nylander to complicated IKEA furniture. Keefe looked as dumbfounded and bewildered as we all felt about it:

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The Leafs finally got a player safety call in their favour! Oiler Alex Chiasson was suspended for an illegal crosscheck to the neck against Jimmy Vesey:

Also in response to that game, a 3-0 shutout of the Oilers that got chippy at the end there, Travis Dermott turned to Zach Bogosian and Scott Sabourin for some tips on how to stay tough:

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Of course, the Leafs continue to deal with goalie issues, as well. Jack Campbell made a dominant return from injury on Saturday, posting a 4-0 shutout, only to be sidelined again with the same injury. Frederik Andersen is not quite back yet, though maybe in tonight’s match up, so the Leafs were relying on Michael Hutchinson. While the goalie carousel is stressful, so far all three netminders have done well for the team.

Finally, Black History Month has ended, but to finish off strong, GM Kyle Dubas spoke about Black Lives Matter to Sportsnet’s Donovan Bennett.

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Hockey is for Everyone?

Oh Jamie Benn, this is not a good look.

Hemal and Chris addressed this better than I can, but suffice it to say this is more than disheartening. I wonder if and how the Dallas Stars and NHL will respond? It doesn’t help matters that Benn seems to be blocking anyone who asks him about this on social media. Sigh.

Dad Duty

Two young NHL players are set to become dads shortly! Congratulations to Dylan Strome and his girlfriend, as well as Travis Konecny and his girlfriend, on their upcoming new arrivals:

Can I just mention how old this makes me feel?

Goalie tantrums

Jordan Binnington made his displeasure with being pulled from the game known the other night:

Binnington got a little punchy with a few Sharks players while heading off the ice, and Evander Kane had some thoughts on that:

It’s always entertaining to watch NHL players throw tantrums, isn’t it?

Quick Hits

The drama continues to grow in Buffalo, with both Jack Eichel and Jeff Skinner reportedly unhappy with the state of affairs:

Goalie drama in Montreal, with Carey Price struggling and the Habs firing their goaltending coach:

And will John Tortorella be the next coach on the chopping block?

Finally, a growing number of teams are starting to allow fans back into arenas. While this might be good news for revenue, and for hockey fans itching to get back to games, there are still real and valid concerns about spreading COVID. We all want to get back to normalcy, but safety of fans, staff, and players needs to be paramount. We hope the time is coming where games are open to all again, safely.

 

That’s for this week, friends! Enjoy your hockey, see you next Wednesday.