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From The Branches: A Toronto Maple Leafs Thanksgiving

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There are many things for Leafs fans to be thankful for this year.

NHL: New York Rangers at Toronto Maple Leafs Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

On this, the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday, it’s weird to be in a situation where as a Leafs fan there are many things about the team that I can be thankful for.

I’m thankful for having capable management and coaching - even if sometimes they make decisions I don’t agree with or seem weird, they have undoubtedly built SOMETHING that as a fan I can appreciate.

I’m thankful for the embarrassment of riches the Leafs have in fun, entertaining talent on and off the ice: Auston Matthews, William Nylander and Mitch Marner are an embarrassment of riches by themselves, but we also have Jake Gardiner, Morgan Rielly, Nazem Kadri, James Van Hockey, and just for the lulz Leo Komarov. Hell, for the holiday I’ll throw in Hyman just for Fulemin!

Most importantly, I’m EXTREMELY thankful for this community. I’m thankful for the team of writers and editors here who do such a great job running the site and wrangling the kittens on the ranch. I think I can safely say that it is not just a good Leafs’ blog to recommend, but a great one. The amount and quality of content that they all churn out for the Leafs, the Marlies, the Solar Bears, Women’s Hockey, CHL and European league hockey is pretty incredible. They write interesting breakdowns of players and plays using gifs and videos, they dig into the analytics parts in ways I can understand, they cover every bit of news that comes out, they have fun mailbags and fashion takes, and they even put out podcasts. They #WatchTheGames for Game Day Threads and Recaps, they break down trade rumours and actual trades, they delve deep into the CBA to try and figure out what the f*&^ goes on with LTIR and bonuses and the cap, and they also comment on the cultural, the media, and the economic issues within the sport and the league itself.

You can’t ask for more than what they do, and I’m very thankful for it.

I’m also thankful for the community of commenters who give a whole extra level of discussion and entertainment here. There are some great Fanposts with regularity from commenters for extra content, but also the fun and inane banter on anything and everything. Where else can you find an intense, logical discussion about what sandwich would be best have carnal relations with? I’ve met at least half of the masthead in person, including two who call ‘Murica home. I’ve met a bunch of commenters at various PPP gatherings, and I’ve been in the PPP fantasy hockey and baseball leagues for two seasons now. I love y’all!

I raise a forkful of turkey and stuffing to you too!

With all that sappy stuff out of the way, let’s talk about why we’re all here: LEAFS HOCKEY!

They take on the Chicago Blackhawks tonight in a battle of two undefeated and ridiculously high scoring teams. Both have put up 15 goals in two games, so we should all be prepared for a 1-0 shootout win with fewer than 40 shots between both teams. Either way I can’t wait for this game, I get so excited for every game day now!

ONTO THE LINKS!

Fulemin and Arvind put out their next episode of their Back To Excited Podcast and it is pretty great, so give it a listen!

Katya gives her un-objective view of Calvin Pickard’s history in the NHL that’s WELL worth a read.

You can watch Steve Dangle’s usual calm, level analysis of the Leafs’ 8-5 win in his latest LFR.

New PPP writer HardevLad broke down the Marlies 3-1 win in their home opener.

Katya shares a video of Liljegren’s first AHL goal that helped the Leafs take their second game 4-3.

Mirtle at The Athletic talks about the Leafs’ road to improving defensively.

Around The NHL

J.T. Brown put out a statement following his raising a fist during the anthem of Saturday night’s game:

If you enjoy your thanksgiving dinner with a side of schadenfreude you can read the Habs Eye on the Prize recap of their 2-0 loss to the Rangers Sunday night. Caution: those with heart problems might want to avoid the amount of salt it contains.

Poll

What Are You Most Thankful For Today?

This poll is closed

  • 33%
    Marlanderthews just being so damn FUN
    (103 votes)
  • 31%
    Knowing Shanahan, Lou, Dubas, and Babcock are steering the ship
    (97 votes)
  • 8%
    Having PPP as an #ActuallyGoodLeafsBlog
    (25 votes)
  • 27%
    LEAFS GAMEDAY BABY WOOOO!
    (87 votes)
312 votes total Vote Now