Toronto Maple Leafs

I Love This Hartford Whalers Pic

photoMy bud Vinay Menon linked to an SI slide show on NHL / music collaborations.

As I was perusing the list I came across this write-up about the Hartford Whalers' Brass Bonanza.

But what struck me was the photo that accompanied the SI story. It's one of the most beautiful pictures I've ever seen. There's something about this pic...

hartford-whalers

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Of Darcy Tucker and the Jersey Jinx

LeafsDarcy Tucker has announced his retirement. The former Leafs forward scored 215 goals and 476 points and amassed 1410 minutes in penalties in 947 career NHL games.

Back in 2002, Darcy Tucker and Bryan McCabe had terrible seasons. That led my brothers and I to believe in the jersey jinx. You see, one brother wore a McCabe jersey while the other wore a Darcy Tucker. I, of course, stayed true to Bill Barilko. Here's a pic of us in our jerseys almost a decade ago.

Bill Barilko

Way back in 2003, during a comeback year for both Tucker and McCabe, my brother Ryan wrote the following guest blog entry.

A couple of Christmas' back I purchased a Maple Leaf jersey for both brothers. Mike was given the late great jersey of Bill Barilko, and it was given with confidence that his legend would live on and the value of the authentic leaf jersey would never devalue. However I took quite a risk when I grabbed a Darcy Tucker jersey for Steve. Last year I believe he used the jersey to clean up the mess Mike left behind after the Leafs took an exit in the playoffs. This year, however, that Tucker jersey must be worn proudly. Every Boo Tucker takes from every fan in every rink we play at makes me ecstatic!! He not only distracts players and gets them off their game, but he is scoring goals and getting to the right spot on the ice. Tucker is a boon to the Leafs, and I truly believe that every Stanley Cup contender needs a "Tucker" on their team. So continue yapping your yap Tucker... I, for one, love every word you say.. or cry....

Ya had to love #16's intensity and grit. Here's an autograph I got from Tucker many moons ago.

Darcy Tucker Autograph

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I'm Liking Kris Versteeg

leafsI'm liking what I've seen so far from new Maple Leaf Kris Versteeg. The Phil Kessel, Tyler Bozak, and Kris Versteeg line has oozed with chemistry, with Versteeg showing an offensive flair above and beyond the expected. I can't wait to see what he does in the regular season.

Versteeg, by the way, had his name misspelled on the Stanley Cup. It was engraved as "Kris Vertseeg" before being corrected.

ept_sports_nhl_experts-21711112-1285739517

I don't care how they spell his name, I just want one of these suckers here in Toronto.

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A Leafs Fan Blogs

NotepadLast week, I met Toronto Star columnist Vinay Menon for dinner at Real Sports Bar & Grill. Real Sports Bar & Grill, if you haven't yet been, is amazing. 199 televisions and the largest indoor HDTV in North America makes it a pretty spectacular sports bar. Oh yeah, and the convo with Vinay was pretty awesome, too.

Vinay and I were talking about blogging. He's starting a Leafs blog that won't be all about stats and depth charts, but from a long-time fan's point of view. He's calling it A Leafs Fan Blogs.

If you're a Maple Leaf fan, you'll want to check this out. Vinay's not just a cool guy, he's a great writer.

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Tiger Williams Likes His Quikki Garbage Bags

TVAccording to my Maple Leafs Season Countdown Clock (patent pending), there are only 18 days, 22 hours, 1 minute, and 20 seconds left until the Maple Leafs opener. That's got me thinking about our chances this year, and who will make the big club.

Here's another retro gem shared by Retrontario featuring former Leafs touch guy Tiger Williams. Back in 1985, Tiger did these ads for Quikki garbage bags, proclaiming them to be "Tiger tough". I'm pretty sure that voice over is by Fergie Olver.

Let's hope our 2010/2011 Leafs aren't garbage.

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Kaberle Trade Watch: All Hands On Deck

leafsI've asked all staff to give up their respective Sundays so all hands are on deck for today's Tomas Kaberle trade watch.

The window in Kaberle's trade clause closes at midnight. That leaves us with only 15.5 hours to pull the trigger on a deal. Everyone here will be hammering away at the phones, their Blackberries and email in an effort to sniff out Burke's plans and bring you this Leafs news before the competition.

We're calling this Kaberle Trade Watch 2010. Clever, eh?

Tomas Kaberle Autograph

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Jenny Quit Because of Kerry Fraser

thumbsdownI'm guessing you've all seen this by now. Jenny supposedly quit her office assistant gig via dry erase board and it's pretty amusing stuff, even if it is probably fake.

Here's one of her grievances:

fired

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KesselySnipes' Dion Phaneuf Video

leafsI haven't written about the Leafs in a while. The countdown clock tells me there's still 85 days, 9 hours, 35 minutes, and 35 seconds left until the Maple Leafs opener.

This awesome video is from KesselySnipes. You should watch it.

[via Pension Plan Puppets]

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Brett Lebda Signs With Maple Leafs

leafsBrian Burke made a huge splash in the free agent pool by signing unrestricted free agent defenceman Brett Lebda to a two-year contract, worth $1.45 million per season.

Lebda, 28, has appeared in 326 regular season games amassing 18 goals, 50 assists, and 201 penalty minutes. But he's a #5 or #6 defenseman on a team that desperately needs help up front. And we already have Dion Phaneuf, Tomas Kaberle, Jeff Finger, Francois Beauchemin, Luke Schenn, Carl Gunnarsson and Mike Komisarek.

I take it the signing of Lebda means Kaberle is as good as gone. Either that or Burke has completely lost his mind.

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Maple Leafs 2010/2011 Season Countdown Clock

ClockIf you click on over to http://www.torontomike.com/countdown.html you'll learn there are 95 days, 8 hours, 23 minutes, and 22 seconds left until the Maple Leafs opener against the Habs.

That countdown clock will track the seconds remaining until we drop the puck for real once more. I've done this every summer for eight years and there's always at least one fan who checks it daily.

I recommend checking it hourly.

Our Most Important Ornament

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