Matthews and Andersen make their returns as the Leafs look for the sweep of the three-game tilt vs Edmonton

After posting two straight shutouts against the Oilers, the Leafs appear to be getting two huge boosts to their lineup on Wednesday:

Sheldon Keefe says Auston Matthews and Frederik Andersen will both play for #Leafs tonight
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) March 3, 2021

Auston Matthews told the media yesterday that he wants to return when he knows he is at 100% efficiency and it won’t hinder his abilities long-term, so it sounds like he was given the green light to be reinstated into the lineup. While it might not be the best idea given how chippy the end of Monday’s game got, he will no doubt provide a significant jolt to the Leafs offensive unit.
Frederik Andersen also coming back brings some much-needed stability to the crease that has been off the ruckus these last few days. Toronto will need him to stay healthy as Jack Campbell re-aggravated his leg injury during Saturday’s win and it’s unclear when he will be back (although he did get some reps in during the morning skate).

Campbell skating today, but not confirmed as replacing Hutch as back-up to Freddy. Barabanov coming out for Matthews, Nylander is OK.
— Lance Hornby (@sunhornby) March 3, 2021

One …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

Leafs News & Notes: Matthews and Andersen nearing return, Nylander held out of practice, Dermott ready for retribution?

The Leafs are riding high after Jack Campbell and Michael Hutchinson helped lead the team to back to back shutouts over Connor McDavid and company in the last couple of games, and they’ve done so without Auston Matthews in the lineup as well. Tuesday’s practice, however, brought with it some optimism that reinforcements for an already formidable squad could be on the way sooner rather than later.
Matthews has been skating for the last few days but Tuesday’s practice was the first time that he was back skating in his regular place between Mitch Marner and Joe Thornton as part of the main practice group. He is still questionable to return for Wednesday’s matchup but returning to full practice is an encouraging step in his recovery.

Auston Matthews on how his hand/wrist is doing:
“It’s feeling a lot better. Day by day it’s progressed. The plan is to see how it feels tomorrow and go from there.”
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) March 2, 2021

According to head coach Sheldon Keefe, Matthews has been battling with an injury to his hand/wrist area for most of the season but it was aggravated further in last Wednesday’s overtime …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Raptors: How many wins would Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka have added to this team?

Raptors: How many wins would Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka have added to this team?

After starting out 2-8, the Toronto Raptors’ rise back to contention despite losing Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka in free agency is nothing short of remarkable. However, one of the main talking points this season has been Masai Ujiri’s inability to replace the pair after they signed with the Lakers and Clippers, respectively. Alex Len […]
Raptors: How many wins would Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka have added to this team? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

The Leafs look to put out the Flames and get back on the scoreboard

A mere 48 hours after getting shutout by the Flames on Monday night, the Leafs head into the rematch with some much-needed reinforcements.

Sheldon Keefe on #Leafs injured parties:
Zach Hyman WILL play tonight. Nic Petan out.
Everyone else is still out.
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) February 24, 2021

The Leafs surely missed Zach Hyman two nights ago as the Leafs loaded top line failed to find the back of the net while also hurting the overall depth. Hyman should help restore some balance and provide Toronto with some much-needed offensive reinforcement.
Sheldon Keefe told the media that Frederik Andersen is “progressing well” but did not provide an update as to when we can expect him to be reinstated into the lineup. Along with Jack Campbell still not cleared to return, that means we can expect Michael Hutchinson to make his second straight start (more on him in a bit).
Kristen Shilton reported that the Leafs might be going with their Reverse Retros for tonight’s tilt as the Leafs tweeted out a picture of John Tavares wearing the jersey for the Game Day post. Going into the game, the Leafs have a record of 1-0-1 when they don the Reverse Retros …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Raptors: Should Nick Nurse win Coach of the Year again?

Toronto Raptors: Should Nick Nurse win Coach of the Year again?

After a dismal 2-8 start, the Toronto Raptors suddenly find themselves in a position to grab a top-four spot in the Eastern Conference, and they have head coach Nick Nurse to thank for the stunning turnaround. As fans of the Raptors know too well, The NBA is all about narratives. It always has been, and […]
Toronto Raptors: Should Nick Nurse win Coach of the Year again? – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Eddie Huband / Raptors HQ

Seravalli: Expecting Auston Matthews to score 50 goals this season is “nonsensical”

After another two-goal performance against the Ottawa Senators, the talk of the town is exactly how many times we can expect Auston Matthews to score this season.

Matthews currently leads the league with 16 goals through 17 games. At the pace he’s operating on right now, Matthews would eclipse the 50-goal plateau despite this season having a shortened 56-game schedule.
Is that doable? Frank Seravalli, the co-host of The DFO Rundown, spoke about it on Friday…
Seravalli: “I get it. Auston Matthews is off to a fantastic start and I’m not slagging him by any means. What he’s done has been simply incredible to this point.
But, really? The Hart? The Selke? Should we give him the Vezina as well? I get that he’s been fantastic, but geez, it’s every minute of every day it feels like the fawning over Auston Matthews.
Can he score a goal-per-game? What are we even talking about here? No, he cannot score a goal-per-game.
Alex Ovechkin is the best, I think, goal scorer of all-time. In his best 56-game stretch of his career, he scored 48 goals, which is incredible. If Auston Matthews could get to 50, it would be insane. 50 in 55 games …

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Author: Cam Lewis / The Leafs Nation

Tavares, Nylander end droughts, Matthews extends point streak to 15 in 7-3 blowout vs the Sens

After a blown lead on Monday and a game that was closer than it needed to be last night, the Leafs finally had the kind of game we expected against the Sens, as all of the big guns would show up in a 7-3 blowout. There were a lot of goals to cover, so let’s get right into it.
It was a high scoring first period as the Leafs made sure to get a quick lead to support Hutchinson’s season debut. They got a couple powerplays to start the game, and capitalized on the second one with another Auston Matthews goal, who gets his 15th of the season, and extends his point streak to 15 games as well.

pic.twitter.com/UCG8CfUpzF
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) February 19, 2021

The Sens ran into a bit of goalie trouble after that, as Marcus Hogberg got hurt and Matt Murray, who played last night. Don’t worry, there was no David Ayres in this game to give the Leafs any trouble.
The Matthews goal was the only goal for most of the first, but the floodgates opened up late. First, the Leafs made it 2-0 as Joe Thornton deflects a Jake Muzzin a slap …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Leafs add some offensive depth by trading for Alex Galchenyuk

So, after Galchenyuk’s recent interesting week of being on traded to Carolina, instantly being put on waivers, going unclaimed, and assigned to Chicago of the AHL, he’s now found a new home.

We’ve acquired Alex Galchenyuk from Carolina in exchange for Egor Korshkov and David Warsofsky. #LeafsForever
Details: https://t.co/SZX639nsNG pic.twitter.com/P8uMQ5wDQ1
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) February 15, 2021

Yep, that’s right, the Leafs added Galchenyuk, a guy they could have claimed off waivers for free in exchange for Egor “Not DeBrincat” Korshkov, and David Wars of Sky, who was the throw-in AHLer in the Kapanen trade.
In case you’re wondering why they traded for Galchenyuk instead of claiming him off waivers, it comes down to the fact that Galchenyuk is more valuable to the Leafs when they can start him out in the Marlies, or have him take up residency on the taxi squad for the next month without requiring waivers than having to force him into the roster and hoping he pans out every night.
Additionally, it frees the Leafs from a couple of standard players contracts in the process, which isn’t a bad thing.
We can probably …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Raptors rumors: Pass or pursue for 4 trade targets

Raptors rumors: Pass or pursue for 4 trade targets

The Toronto Raptors have a record of 11-13 after a tough 128-113 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies. It has been a struggle this season, at times, but the Raptors are very much in the thick of the playoff hunt right now. The roster is flawed. It is overwhelmed with players you could consider projects like […]
Raptors rumors: Pass or pursue for 4 trade targets – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Jason Mills / Raptors HQ

Raptors: Chris Boucher’s stellar performance not enough as Toronto loses to the Hawks

Raptors: Chris Boucher’s stellar performance not enough as Toronto loses to the Hawks

The Toronto Raptors had no time to rest after a controversial win against the Brooklyn Nets. On the second night of a back-to-back, Toronto was unable to come away with the victory against the Atlanta Hawks, snapping their 3 game win streak. Nick Nurse’s squad just seemed a step slow but was able to remain competitive […]
Raptors: Chris Boucher’s stellar performance not enough as Toronto loses to the Hawks – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Nickeem Khan / Raptors HQ