Raptors: Masai Ujiri building 100 courts in Africa is heartwarming

Raptors: Masai Ujiri building 100 courts in Africa is heartwarming

The NBA has been looking to expand the game beyond North America and Europe over the last few seasons, and they’ve been identifying Africa as a place wherein interest could explode. In addition to his day job helping the Toronto Raptors remain successful, Masai Ujiri has played an integral role in this venture. Ujiri has […]
Raptors: Masai Ujiri building 100 courts in Africa is heartwarming – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Ryan Borucki is back with the Blue Jays

The Blue Jays’ game of pitcher musical chairs continued on Monday, as the team sent Trent Thornton to Triple-A in order to open up room to recall Ryan Borucki.

ROSTER MOVES:
LHP Ryan Borucki recalled from Triple-A
RHP Trent Thornton optioned to Triple-A pic.twitter.com/wVdKhASOP8
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) September 13, 2021

Thornton, who was once in the mix as one of Charlie Montoyo’s high-leverage arms, has been relegated to mop-up duty. He was sent down at the end of August after some ugly outings and got called up for Sunday’s series finale in Baltimore and was immediately after allowing two earned runs over two innings of work against the Orioles.
Borucki has been in Triple-A since early August. He missed most of May, all of June, and half of July due to a forearm strain and was activated shortly after the All-Star break. In seven appearances over roughly a month after that injury, Borucki tossed six innings and allowed five earned runs on six hits and four walks. He also surrendered three home runs.
His stint in Triple-A has been up and down, as he’s tossed five outings, three of which were scoreless and two of …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Injury Updates! Julian Merryweather is pitching again, Cavan Biggio has a UCL sprain, and more

Ahead of last night’s game, the Blue Jays activated reliever Joakim Soria from the Injured List and sent Conor Overton down to Triple-A. Here are a bunch of other injury-related updates…

Julian Merryweather is back on the mound after suffering a setback in his rehab assignment last week. On August 18, Merryweather made his first outing since April with the Dunedin Blue Jays and tossed a scoreless frame. After that, he was said to be dealing with some general soreness, so the team pumped the breaks a bit.
On Tuesday, Merryweather tossed an inning in the Florida Complex League, striking out one while not allowing a hit or a walk. It still seems as though Merryweather is a ways away, but maybe he can make his way back before the end of September. Rosters will be expanded by then, which will help, but, still, given the way things have gone, I wouldn’t hold my breath.
George Springer has been doing drills and live batting practice and he was seen running the bases at the Rogers Centre, which is a good sign. Springer has been on the IL for 10 days now so he’s technically able to return to the …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Trade Bait: Who’s in the Conversation?

Trying to anticipate potential trades is a mug’s game. You cannot win, but like the gambling addict who can’t stay out of the casino, sometimes you can’t resist playing anyway. As is my nature, rather than just going for a cheap and easy expression of opinion (“well if it were up to me I’d offer them this guy for that guy and it’d be a win-win”) I’m going to attempt to add just a little nuance to the discussion of potential departures.

As I see it, there are six categories of players who fit into the discussion in different ways:
1. Core 40 man roster guys – I mean, theoretically they could trade Robbie Ray… but they are NOT in any realistic scenario doing that.
2. Marginal 40 man roster guys – these are players that you can afford to give up in the right deal, particularly when you have enough similar players in the organization to fill the gap. Think guys like Riley Adams, Jonathan Davis, or TJ Zuech. Much less value of course but they could be side pieces in a larger deal or part of a marginal acquisition (say you wanted to get Anthony Bass – not proposing …

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Author: Tammy Rainey / Blue Jays Nation

TheLeafsNation Fantasy Gameday — So uh… game seven hey?

Welcome to TheLeafsNation Game Day where we take a look at today’s Leafs game and a few other things happening around the league all with daily fantasy in mind.

They didn’t do it in game five, but can the Leafs make it happen in game six? We’ll find out in a few long hours.
DraftKings has an offer for your first deposit! When you deposit $5 or more, you’ll get $15 in DraftKings dollars! Sign up and join in the action here.
The Matchup

Toronto
Montreal
Record
3-3
3-3
GF/GA
17-11
11-17
Power play %

14.3

11.1

Penalty kill %
88.9

85.7

CF%
52.12
47.88
xGF%
58.32
41.68
PDO
101.2
98.8
Goals in all situations, analytics at 5×5 c/o naturalstattrick.com.
Who I like
Big players show up in big games and the Leafs need Auston Matthews ($9,200) to show up tonight. He’s been generating lots of shots, but has four points in six games — three of which came in game two. He’s still averaging 16.7 FPPG, a slight decrease from his 18.3 in the regular season.
William Nylander ($6,000) has been great for the Leafs in the playoffs scoring seven points in six games. He’s averaging 13.4 FPPG, a slight uptick from his 10.6 in the regular season.
Someone who …

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Author: Zach Laing / The Leafs Nation

Tavares and Muzzin injury updates

Here we are heading into Game Seven of the first round, and the Leafs will appear to be doing so without their captain, and one of their top defensemen. Welcome to Leafs Nation. Here are the updates on where they are at…
Tavares skating…

John Tavares participated in the @MapleLeafs optional morning skate ahead of Game 7 tonight. #NHLonSN pic.twitter.com/JLJqoHZhpj
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) May 31, 2021

Yep, that’s John Tavares skating (although not looking completely comfortable) in advance of tonight’s Game Seven. The Leafs were quick to rule out Tavares for tonight, and that shouldn’t really be a surprise as this is the first full skate he’s participated in. Having the captain back to work with the players today was hopefully a positive for the team, and maybe, just maybe the Leafs want to play well enough to give Tavares a chance to come back during the playoffs.

“It’s progress that he’s on the ice with other players … He’s had no setbacks” … Sheldon Keefe on John Tavares #Leafs “His recovery has been quite remarkable.”
— Kevin McGran (@kevin_mcgran) May 31, 2021

Playing guess the return for Tavares is irresponsible, so we won’t, but we will say that it …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

TLN Three Stars: There just had to be a Game 7

What do the Leafs going to a Game 7 and Thanos have in common? Both are inevitable.
I mean, at the very least, they’ll get to exorcise those demons, but they should’ve just closed it out, that would’ve been much appreciated.
They didn’t really deserve to have this game go to overtime so in the end they got what they deserved, but the way they played in overtime, they should’ve won.
Yeah, that’s all I got for this intro. I just had back-to-back games where my heart got ripped out, jammed back in, only to be ripped out again.
3rd Star: Jason Spezza
This was a highly contested spot for most of overtime, because I thought everyone played out of their minds to allow only two shots against for almost the whole period, but Spezza gets it in the end, solely for giving us hope with the 2-1 goal.
2nd Star: TJ Brodie
The obvious reason is that he came up clutch and tied the game late in the third. But also, he really stepped up in the absence of Jake Muzzin in the third and overtime, and was the reliable steady force as always.
1 …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

TheLeafsNation Fantasy Gameday — Will the Leafs close out the Habs in game six?

Welcome to TheLeafsNation Game Day where we take a look at today’s Leafs game and a few other things happening around the league all with daily fantasy in mind.

They didn’t do it in game five, but can the Leafs make it happen in game six? We’ll find out in a few long hours.
DraftKings has an offer for your first deposit! When you deposit $5 or more, you’ll get $15 in DraftKings dollars! Sign up and join in the action here.
The Matchup

Toronto
Montreal
Record
3-2
2-3
GF/GA
15-8
8-15
Power play %

17.7

0.0

Penalty kill %
100.0

82.4

CF%
51.91
48.09
xGF%
57.28
42.72
PDO
101.5
98.5
Goals in all situations, analytics at 5×5 c/o naturalstattrick.com.
Who I like
Auston Matthews ($9,200) is up to four points in five games and has only scored one goal. That, despite firing 19 shots on net. I think that changes soon and it could be tonight. He’s always worth a spot in your lineup.
William Nylander ($5,900) is leading the Leafs in playoff scoring with seven points in five games. He’s scored four times and at his value, he’s absolutely a must-play.
Jake Muzzin ($4,800) is averaging 9.4 FPPG so far in the playoffs, a slight uptick from …

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Author: Zach Laing / The Leafs Nation

TheLeafsNation Fantasy Gameday — Leafs look to eliminate Habs

Welcome to TheLeafsNation Game Day where we take a look at today’s Leafs game and a few other things happening around the league all with daily fantasy in mind.

Tonight, the Toronto Maple Leafs will look to close out the Montreal Canadiens in their first round series. Can the Leafs finish them off?
DraftKings has an offer for your first deposit! When you deposit $5 or more, you’ll get $15 in DraftKings dollars! Sign up and join in the action here.
The Matchup

Toronto
Montreal
Record
3-1
1-3
GF/GA
12-4
4-12
Power play %

18.8

0.0

Penalty kill %
100.0

81.3

CF%
52.35
47.65
xGF%
57.76
42.24
PDO
103.6
96.4
Goals in all situations, analytics at 5×5 c/o naturalstattrick.com.
Who I like
Have you heard of Auston Matthews ($9,200)? He’s pretty good. Despite only have points in one games, he’s still averaging 17.2 fantasy points per game.
I’m once again telling you to ride with William Nylander ($5,800). He’s got goals in each of the Leafs four games and is averaging 14.5 FPPG. Great value there.
I think Jack Campbell ($8,300) price might be a few hundred high, but I don’t mind this play tonight.
Around the NHL
The only other game is Carolina-Nashville tonight. Alex Nedeljkovic ($8,000) gets the …

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Author: Zach Laing / The Leafs Nation

TLN Three Stars: The Leafs finally get to play in the good kind of elimination game

After a truly unfortunate first game of this series there was a bit of pause for concern about how the Leafs would do in this series. Without Tavares, and now without Foligno, the Leafs looked to be in an uphill battle situation. Thankfully the Canadiens really aren’t good at all and that has been the great equalizer as the Maple Leafs now have a 3-1 series lead on the strength of the 4-0 shutout tonight. You can definitely hook this series up to my veins.
The first period held true to how things have gone for the Leafs in the first throughout the series. Not to say they looked bad, but just not able to get on the scoreboard. The second period was a different story and with William Nylander stretching his goal streak to 4 games, and Galchenyuk starting a night to remember, the period would end 3-0 and basically seal the game as Spezza and Thornton also found the net.
It goes without saying that with a shutout Jack Campbell had one hell of a night, and playing on back to back nights and only giving up one goal is incredible. I’m going to be cautious not …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation