Personnel Still Matters Most

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 22) – As Hall-of-Fame executive Cliff Fletcher might say: “Analytics Shmanalytics.” Time of course will tell, but the hiring of Kyle Dubas as assistant general manager would seem to be a progressive move by the Toronto Maple Leafs. Dubas is young (28) and was highly touted as a junior hockey […]

Leafs Still Need Franson

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 22) – There’s a lot of flippant chatter about how the Maple Leafs have signed Cody Franson to a one-year contract as a matter of convenience. As if the club is so indisputably deep on the blue line it can afford to play games with a 6-foot-5 inch defenseman still just […]

The “Toronto Collapse” – Part 2

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 20) – Having provided background in my Friday blog (, it is now time to offer hard evidence as to why Toronto has richly earned its place among the most inept cities in professional sport. No criterion better exemplifies incompetence than allowing prosperity to slip away. The euphemism “choking” is often […]

The “Toronto Collapse” – Part 1

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 18) – “Wait.” For more than a few years, the above-mentioned word – by itself – has become an habitual reply among sports fans in this city. Hey, the Blue Jays are the hottest team in baseball – winning 20 of 24 games. Edwin Encarnacion is unstoppable. “Wait.” How about […]

Internet Mania is Tragically an Epidemic

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 17) – Do I think the Leafs should trade Dion Phaneuf? At some point, absolutely. Not because the team’s most recent collapse was his fault alone but rather because the other two elements of a failed nucleus – Randy Carlyle and Phil Kessel – appear to be going nowhere. Ultimately, […]

“By the Time We Got to Woodstock…”

By HOWARD BERGER TORONTO (July 16) – Jesus, I’m old. How many reading this remember where they were at 9:32 a.m. EDT 45 years ago today? If they were around 45 years ago today? I didn’t think so. At the moment in question, I was standing with a transistor (or portable) radio on the grounds […]

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