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Leafs Head Out for Road Swing Aiming to Build on Home Stand Sweep

by Adam Proteau Proteautype /

Although they were riding a five-game win streak, as the Maple Leafs took off their special uniforms - all-white equipment from head-to-toe, to be worn during Toronto's outdoor game in D.C. against the Washington Capitals March 3 - Friday after practice at their west-end training facility, the players and coaches understood there were aspects of their game that needed work. Of course, it's a good thing for Leafs Nation to see their team win nine of their past 10 games and sweep their five-game home stand at Air Canada Centre with a 6-3 win over Columbus Wednesday, but the Buds' all-around game left veterans with the feeling they could be much improved, particularly in their own end.

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Maple Leafs Trade Nikita Soshnikov to St Louis

by Staff Writer MapleLeafs /

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced today that the hockey club has traded forward Nikita Soshnikov to the St. Louis Blues in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.

Toronto now holds eight picks in the 2019 NHL Draft. Soshnikov, 24, has skated in three games with the Maple Leafs this season. He was placed on the injured reserve list on December 12 with a lower body injury and has missed 28 games due to injury. The Nizhny Tagil, Russia native has also appeared in 19 games with the Toronto Marlies (AHL), registering 17 points (7 goals, 10 assists) and 12 penalty minutes.

The Maple Leafs return to action on February 17 in Pittsburgh when they take on the Penguins at 7:00 p.m.

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Five Takeaways - Leafs vs. Blue Jackets - 02/14/18

Here are five takeaways from the Maple Leafs' 6-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets Wednesday at Air Canada Centre:

by Adam Proteau /

Moore's early backhand goal

CBJ@TOR: Moore shovels home backhander for early lead

Dominic Moore collects a loose puck, skates into the circle and floats a backhander through Joonas Korpisalo to take an early 1-0 lead

  • 00:52 •

1. Aiming to complete sweep of home stand, Leafs start night on right foot, take first lead early in opening frame. The Leafs have given their fans much to cheer for in recent weeks, winning eight of their past nine games and four in a row - all of which have come at Air Canada Centre since their home stand began Feb. 5 against Anaheim. And the Blue and White continued to perform well as they began Wednesday's tilt against Columbus, who were riding a two-game win streak heading into the contest: Toronto recorded the first goal of the night at 4:36 of the opening period, when centre Dominic Moore streaked down the wing to the left of Blue Jackets goalie Joonas Korpisalo and lifted a backhand shot past him for his fifth goal of the season.

It was the fifth time in a row the Buds have opened the scoring, and on all four previous occasions Toronto went on to win the game. Setting the tone early has become a strength of the Leafs, and when they're able to connect with the first goal at home, the ACC crowd provides them with an electricity they've fed off the rest of the night.

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Leafs mark anniversary of final game at Maple Leaf Gardens

The Leafs return to their hockey shrine for open practice

by Adam Proteau Proteautype /

Exactly 19 years after the Maple Leafs played their final game at Maple Leaf Gardens, the team returned to the iconic Toronto hockey arena Tuesday for an open practice in front of their adoring fans. And although the building isn't exactly the same as it was when it hosted NHL hockey for more than 67 years - it's now a multipurpose facility that is grocery store and part athletic centre for Ryerson University - the spirit and history of the Gardens still resonates with today's group of Leafs.

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Five Takeaways - Leafs vs. Lightning - 02/12/18

Here are five takeaways from the Maple Leafs' 4-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning Monday at Air Canada Centre:

by Adam Proteau /

Nylander's nifty snipe

TBL@TOR: Nylander fires home goal from the circle

Auston Matthews dishes the puck to William Nylander, who lasers a wrist shot into the back of the net from the circle in the 1st period

  • 00:54 •

1. Bolts and Buds feel each other out in playoff-like first period, but Leafs take lead on Nylander one-timer. Riding a three-game win streak, the Leafs welcomed the NHL-leading Lightning to town Monday, and the first period between the two teams had a playoff feel to it: neither side was taking chances as the opponents felt out each other, and each side finished the frame with nine shots on net. But it was Toronto that got on the scoresheet first, as winger William Nylander struck for his 13th goal of the season at the 11:55 mark.

The scoring play began when centre Auston Matthews won a faceoff in Tampa's zone and got the puck back to Jake Gardiner; the blueliner's shot didn't reach goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy, going instead to Matthews, who quickly passed it to Nylander for a blistering one-timer Vasilevskiy had no chance on and a 1-0 Leafs lead. Nylander had three goals and 10 points in his previous nine games, and the sophomore NHLer was Toronto's most dangerous offensive threat through the first two periods Monday.

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Five Takeaways - Leafs vs Senators - 02/10/18

Here are five takeaways from the Maple Leafs' 6-3 victory over the Ottawa Senators Saturday at Air Canada Centre:

by Adam Proteau Proteautype /

1. Marner keeps hot streak going, puts Leafs in front early in opening frame. Toronto winger Mitch Marner has been on a notable offensive run of late, coming into Saturday's tilt against the Senators with two goals in his past three games and three in his past five. And the sophomore didn't take long to keep that hot streak going: he intercepted a turnover from Sens blueliner Johnny Oduya directly in front of Ottawa's net, and almost instantly fired a wrist shot past goaltender Craig Anderson to put the Leafs ahead 1-0 at 1:55 of the first period.

Marner's goal was his 11th of the season and his 38th point of the year, moving him within three points of winger William Nylander for second place among Leafs point-getters. However, neither he - nor Nylander - was done producing points in the game.

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Toronto Maple Leafs Unveil Uniform for Stadium Series

by Staff Writer /

The Toronto Maple Leafs unveiled their team uniform today for the 2018 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series™ game when the Washington Capitals will play host to the Blue and White for a regular season matchup at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on March 3rd.



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Confident Leafs finding different ways to succeed

by Adam Proteau Proteautype /

It's a tried-and-true hockey cliche: good teams find ways to win, even if they don't do so in the most ideal way possible. And that's where the Maple Leafs find themselves as they focus on beating the Ottawa Senators Saturday at Air Canada Centre. Toronto is in the midst of a two-game win streak, and although the pair of victories came in games that weren't flaw-free, they're making the most of their opportunities and earning valuable standings points as they continue in their efforts to secure a playoff berth.

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Five Takeaways - Leafs vs. Predators - 02/07/18

Here are five takeaways from the Maple Leafs' 3-2 shootout win over the Nashville Predators Wednesday at Air Canada Centre:

by Adam Proteau /

van Riemsdyk's strong one-timer

NSH@TOR: van Riemsdyk opens scoring with one-timer

James van Riemsdyk sets up in the high slot and uncorks a big one-timer by Pekka Rinne, opening the scoring late in the 1st period

  • 00:51 •

1. Leafs aim to build win streak, get off to good start with game's first goal. Toronto was coming off a 7-4 win over Anaheim Monday in the first game of a five-game home stand, and the Predators entered the night on a three-game win streak and with a sterling record of 8-1-1 in their past 10 contests. So it was little surprise two talented, well-coached squads took much of the first period to feel out each other and not take an abundance of risks.

That said, the Leafs were persistent in their drive toward Preds goalie Pekka Rinne, and it paid off with 3:54 left in the opening period when winger James van Riemsdyk blasted a shot into Nashville's net for the game's first marker and his 21st goal of the season. At the other end, Buds netminder Frederik Andersen turned aside all eight shots he faced, and Toronto finished the frame with a 1-0 lead.

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Leafs defensemen face evolving challenge

by Adam Proteau Proteautype /

Playing defence at hockey's highest level is as much of a challenge as it's ever been. As is the case with producing offence, preventing the opposition from scoring goals is an evolving challenge. So when two teams combine for 11 goals - as the Maple Leafs and Anaheim Ducks did Monday in Toronto's 7-4 victory at Air Canada Centre - it's evident how difficult the task truly is on a night-in, night-out basis.

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