WOLSTAT: VanVleet’s career night leads Raptors over pesky Heat — Toronto Sun

The Toronto Raptors remain undefeated in the bubble, but Win No. 2 took even more grit than the previous victory. Read More

WOLSTAT: VanVleet’s career night leads Raptors over pesky Heat — Toronto Sun

NBA News — INSANE SPORTS

Heats’ Jimmy Butler Out; Virus Hint – Jimmy Butler was not with the Miami Heat for practice Sunday, and one of his teammates suggested that he was quarantining away from the team. The Heat said only that Butler, who scored 22 points in Miami’s restart-opening win over Denver on Saturday, had “an excused absence.” But Heat teammate Jae […]

NBA News — INSANE SPORTSHeats’ Jimmy Butler Out; Virus Hint – Jimmy Butler was not with the Miami Heat for practice Sunday, and one of his teammates suggested that he was quarantining away from the team. The Heat said only that Butler, who scored 22 points in Miami’s restart-opening win over Denver on Saturday, had “an excused absence.” But Heat teammate Jae Crowder indicated that it wasn’t just a day off for Butler. “We want to talk to him as soon as he gets out of quarantine or whatever he’s in,” Crowder said. “It’s just a next-man-up mentality from a standpoint of staying locked in and engaged, because we know he’s locked in and engaged once he’s able to get back with us. “It’s definitely a curveball for all of us to hear stuff like what’s going on with him,” Crowder added. “You never know what to expect.” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he didn’t know whether Butler would be available to play Monday when Miami faces the Toronto Raptors. The Heat play the Boston Celtics on Tuesday. Crowder’s reference to “quarantine,” especially in these times, suggests that there is a concern about the coronavirus. Everyone inside the NBA’s so-called bubble, players included, is tested daily for the coronavirus. Those tests results are often back within 24 hours, sometimes much less. Read more at:  https://www.foxnews.com/sports/butler-misses-heat-practice-teammate-hints-hes-isolating  (Associated Press)

NBA Ref Addresses Controversial Backcourt Violation Call In Celtics-Blazers — NESN.com

The Celtics’ first win inside the NBA’s Orlando bubble didn’t come without a little controversy. Boston was tabbed with a questionable backcourt violation call late in its seeding game Sunday afternoon against the Portland Trail Blazers. Up three with less than 30 seconds to play, the Celtics were issued the infraction as Jayson Tatum tried…

NBA Ref Addresses Controversial Backcourt Violation Call In Celtics-Blazers — NESN.com

COLUMBUS 2, TORONTO 0: WHAT THE LEAFS SAID: “Obviously, they did what they do best and what we were prepared for. We knew it was going to be difficult. Now we go out on the ice and you feel it. Obviously, we didn’t get one to fall for us here today. I thought we did have some chances to get more than what we got on the scoreboard, but it didn’t fall in for us, it fell in for them. That’s the difference.”

SHELDON KEEFE

Q. (Lance Hornby, Toronto Sun): Sheldon, how concerned were you about your offence tonight or was it just a case of Columbus doing what it does best? 

SHELDON KEEFE: I think it’s both. Obviously, they did what they do best and what we were prepared for. We knew it was going to be difficult. Now we go out on the ice and you feel it. Obviously, we didn’t get one to fall for us here today. I thought we did have some chances to get more than what we got on the scoreboard, but it didn’t fall in for us, it fell in for them. That’s the difference. 

Q. (Steve Simmons, Toronto Sun): How difficult is it when you’re putting Auston out there as much as possible and they’re matching with Jones as much as possible and there you have two of the great players in the NHL going up against each other? 

SHELDON KEEFE: It’s a tough matchup. We can’t forget Werenski in that equation also because he’s a great player, and their forwards. They play as a group of five so no matter who is on the ice it’s going to be hard. This is all stuff that we were prepared for coming in. As I said, now we’re on the ice and you feel it. We didn’t generate as much as I wish we could have. At the same, as I said, it’s a very tight hockey game out there. One falls in for them early in the third period after we had what I thought was a pretty dominant start to the third and thought we were going to be rolling pretty good. All of a sudden, you’re down and it changes the nature of the game from there. Obviously we’ve got to find a way to score.

Q. (Bruce Arthur, Toronto Star): This obviously was the team you expected, the game you expected. Is there anything about this game that makes you worry about the way your team matches up against Columbus going forward or could you see places where the Leafs can handle this matchup better? 

SHELDON KEEFE: Well, I think there’s going to be ways. We’re going to look closer at it and we’ll find ways that we can capitalize a little bit more on some of our opportunities and generate a little bit more. As I said, it’s a very tight game, it’s a good hockey team. It’s two teams that were tight together in the standings, two teams that are very competitive. I thought we played a good enough game to win today, but obviously you can’t win when you don’t score. We’ve got to work with that, but there’s a lot of things that we did do well in the game here today that gave us a chance going into the third period to win the hockey game. We’re going to have to regroup here obviously and push back and get one to go our way next time.  

Q. (Chris Johnston, Sportsnet): I’m just wondering what your thoughts were on Freddie’s performance. Made some big saves but he wasn’t happy with the goal that beat him. 

SHELDON KEEFE: I thought he did make some big saves, for sure. There was a few times they had some real quality looks. He was very good on those and there was some perimeter chances down the wing and stuff like that that he did a really good job of holding his ground on. Obviously, he misread the one in the third there that got by him, but he kept them to one goal. He, as far as I’m concerned, did his job. We’ve got to find a way to give him some help.

Q. (Justin Cuthbert, Yahoo Sports): It seemed Mitch Marner and John Tavares had trouble getting going tonight. What challenges did you see in front of them and what needs to happen for them to get going in the rest of the series? 

SHELDON KEEFE: I thought they had a pretty good first period, actually. They had some pretty good offensive zone shifts and were around the net a little bit. They didn’t really get a chance to build upon that so we’ll have to look at it a little bit closer. Obviously, that’s another part of it is they’ve got a tough matchup there too, right? Gavrikov and Savard are tough defenders just the same as we’ve already talked about the other two. It’s a tough matchup for them, we need to get a little bit more from them but we need more from everybody obviously. We didn’t get anything from anyone today, we only generated one power play. All those types of things make it harder than it needs to be, but we expected it to be hard, we expected it to be uncomfortable. I thought this one today could have gone either way. It didn’t go our way so we’ve got to regroup here and find a way to be better next time out. 

Q. (Kevin McGran, Toronto Star): Just a couple of words if you could on your third and fourth lines. Start with Nick Robertson, what you thought of a teenager playing in his first game tonight, and then also your decision to limit the Gauthier line, I guess obviously looking for offence there. 

SHELDON KEEFE: First, I thought Robbie had some good moments in the game. In fact, he had a great look early in the hockey game, just got the toe of the goaltender there and obviously that was a big moment that could have put us in a real good spot. It was good to see him get into that position, available to get the shot. Otherwise, I thought he was good in a game that was difficult to play. That would be, by far, the hardest game he’s ever played in, I would imagine. He’s going to have to continue to find his way through that. I thought that Kerfoot and Kappy again, I thought those guys had legs and they were on the puck and gave us some pretty good shifts as a line. As for our fourth line, I thought they had a real tough start to the game, some long sequences in our own zone, just not what you want out of your fourth line. It made it difficult to really find any sort of rhythm with them and then, of course, once we’re down early in the third period, it becomes even harder. 

AUSTON MATTHEWS & MORGAN RIELLY

Q. (Lance Hornby, Toronto Sun): What happened to you offensively tonight? What do you have to do in game two? 

MORGAN RIELLY: I don’t know. I think we’ve got to look at it. I think that there were chances that we generated, obviously not capitalizing on any, but I think there are good things you have to look at and areas we have to improve on and we’ll do that tomorrow at practice. 

Q. (Steve Simmons, Toronto Sun): It’s one thing to hear about how tight they play and to even watch the film of how tight they play. What was it like to experience it? 

AUSTON MATTHEWS: Well, first of all, it’s unfortunate that I’m getting a question from you at this point, Steve. I just wanted to say I didn’t really appreciate the article you wrote about me a couple months ago. It was a bit unethical, to be honest. Moving along, I thought they obviously play a really structured defence and they make it hard on you to get on the inside. I think we’ve just got to do a better job of maybe shooting more pucks and have guys coming down on it. 

Q. (Chris Johnston, Sportsnet): Was there anything that surprised you that they did or was it kind of what you guys were expecting? 

AUSTON MATTHEWS: I don’t think anything really surprised us. They play a pretty straightforward and you know what you’re going to expect every night. They’re going to compete, they’re going to play physical. I thought we did some good things, there are some things we can clean up. Obviously, we’ve got to create more offence, get guys more on the inside and capitalize on some opportunities. Their goalie made some good saves as well. 

Q. (Jonas Siegel, The Athletic): Auston, what’s it like to face somebody as big and who can move like Seth Jones, shift after shift? 

AUSTON MATTHEWS: They’re good players. They’re good on both sides of the puck. We’ve got to be aware when they’re out there and obviously try to be strong down low, physical on the offensive side as well as the defensive side. 

FREDERIK ANDERSEN & ZACH HYMAN 

Q. (Josh Clipperton, The Canadian Press): How frustrating is it to play against that team, their style? 

ZACH HYMAN: They play playoff hockey, this is playoff hockey. I thought we had our chances, we just couldn’t capitalize. You’re not going to win any games if you don’t score any goals. They got one and we couldn’t get on the board. 

Q. (Bruce Arthur, Toronto Star): Freddie, if you could just take us through what you saw on that goal and how it went for you? 

FREDERIK ANDERSEN: I saw him coming down the wing and his initial release looked to be a little bit higher. I reacted up and obviously made a little mistake. It cost us a goal and eventually the game, unfortunately. That’s what I saw. 

Q. (Jonas Siegel, The Athletic): Zach, what kind of challenges does Seth Jones present? 

ZACH HYMAN: He’s obviously an elite defenceman. He’s big and strong, he can skate. He plays well on the defensive side and the offensive side. Just trying to make his life and just out there and battle against him.

BLUE JACKETS 2, MAPLE LEAFS 0. Postgame notes.

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS (1-0) vs.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (0-1)

SUNDAY, AUGUST 2, 2020

 123OTFINAL
COLUMBUS0022
TORONTO0000

GAME SUMMARY         |           EVENT SUMMARY        |           FACEOFF SUMMARY

POSTGAME QUOTES:

  • Tonight’s postgame transcript will be updated as it becomes available HERE.
  • The final transcript will be posted to MapleLeafs.com/pressbox


ON THE SCORESHEET

  • Frederik Andersen stopped 33 of the 34 shots he faced in the loss.

SHOTS ON GOAL (5-on-5 in brackets)

 1st2nd3rdOTTOTAL
COLUMBUS8 (8)14 (11)13 (11)35 (30)
TORONTO11 (10)8 (6)9 (9)28 (25)

SHOT ATTEMPTS (5-on-5 in brackets)

 1st2nd3rdOTTOTAL
COLUMBUS24 (21)24 (20)21 (17)69 (58)
TORONTO24 (23)19 (16)19 (19)62 (58)

OF NOTE…

  • The Maple Leafs went 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and 0-for-1 on the power play tonight.
  • Justin Holl made his Stanley Cup playoff debut.
  • Auston Matthews won 75 percent (6 won, 2 lost) of his offensive zone faceoffs. He was 4-for-6 (67%) on the draw when matched up with Columbus centre Pierre-Luc Dubois.
  • Ilya Mikheyev made his Stanley Cup playoff debut.
  • Nick Robertson made his Stanley Cup playoff debut. He is the fifth Maple Leaf in franchise history to appear in a postseason game with the Maple Leafs at age 18 or younger and the first since the 1940s, per NHL Stats.
  • John Tavares was on the ice for a team-high 29 Toronto shot attempts-for at 5-on-5. He finished the game with a 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage of 60.4 percent (29 for, 19 against). 
  • John Tavares won 70 percent (7 won, 3 lost) of his offensive zone faceoffs. He was 8-for-10 (80%) in the faceoff circle when matched up with Columbus centre Alexander Wennberg. 

MAPLE LEAFS LEADERS

Shots6 (Matthews)
Shot Attempts(Matthews)
Faceoff Wins15 (Tavares)
Faceoff Win Percentage79% (Tavares)
Hits(Kapanen)
Blocked Shots(Ceci, Kerfoot)
Takeaways(Matthews)
TOI24:38 (Matthews)
Power Play TOI1:32 (Five players tied)
Shorthanded TOI2:33 (Holl)
Shifts26 (Five players tied)
5-on-5 Shot Attempt Percentage63.4% (Marner – 26 for, 15 against)
  

UPCOMING GAMES:

  • Tuesday, August 4, 4 p.m., Columbus at Toronto (SN, NBCSN, TVA Sports)
  • Thursday, August 6, TBD, Toronto at Columbus (TBD)
  • Friday, August 7, TBD, Toronto at Columbus (TBD)*
  • Sunday, August 9, TBD, Columbus at Toronto (TBD)*
    *If Necessary

Stats reflect official NHL stats at the time of distribution. Please consult official NHL game sheets (links above) to confirm no statistical changes were made.