Watching the turbulent second half of the NHL season the Maple Leafs are currently having has reminded me of one fact about Leafs fans, we are defined by our loyalty.
The Toronto Maple Leafs surprised critics in the first half of the season, keeping themselves in the race for the third playoff spot in the Atlantic division, despite having a young team. Before the all-star break, the team had a record of 23-15-9, a 12 point improvement from where the team was at that point a year ago.
However, since the break, the Leafs have fallen out of the third spot in the division, and are battling to hold on to the final wild card spot in the conference. Their record since the all star break, as of The Standard’s press time, is 4-5-2.
Even so, according to ESPN, the Leafs have the fourth best home attendance average in the league this season, with 19,927 fans per game. Last season, the Leafs’ home attendance average was sixth in the league with 19,158. To put this in perspective, last season the Leafs finished dead last in the NHL standings, and yet they were still able to post an attendance average that was in the top 10 of the 30-team league.
Fans who have been watching the Leafs each season know it is never a smooth ride. There was what Brian Burke called the “18 wheeler going right off a cliff” in 2012, when the Leafs went on a 1-8-1 run to take them out of a playoff spot. As well, fans who had been watching the team in 2007 will remember when the Leafs playoff hopes came down to the final game, when the New York Islanders took the final playoff spot by beating the New Jersey Devils in a shootout. And, please nobody mention the Leafs-Bruins playoff game 7 loss in 2013.
What I am getting at here is that fans of this team never give up. The Leafs have not won a cup since 1967, yet every year we keep hoping. As a fan myself, I have watched a great many disappointing seasons, and yet I am unable to give up hope the Leafs will one day become a consistent contender for the Stanley Cup. Despite whatever happened in the previous season, I keep watching this team every year.
This is why Leafs fans make great friends or partners, because we are loyal. With the rise of Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, William Nylander and Connor Brown, the future looks bright, and hopefully it won’t be long before our loyalty is rewarded with a Stanley Cup. For now, keep the hope of great things alive Leafs fans, like you have been since 1967.
Heart shaped candies, chocolate boxes, baskets and other items currently lining store shelves are reminders that Valentine’s Day is coming up soon.
Yes, the annual celebration of love is getting closer. However, as a person who is currently single, I can’t help feeling like Valentine’s Day is just another day.
As well, I know some people who would say that Valentine’s Day only serves to remind them that they are still single.
I remember when I was a kid in elementary school, Valentine’s Day was a bit more special. Every student would receive valentines with their name on them.
In my opinion, this allowed all of the students to feel included in this celebration. But, as everyone grew older, the perspective of Valentine’s Day changed to being a day just for couples.
However, I have a recommendation for those who are single on Valentine’s Day. Instead of letting it be a day that reminds you that you don’t have a partner, use it as an opportunity to tell those in your life who you respect and love how much you appreciate them.
The reason, in my mind, that Valentine’s Day was special in school was because it showed that your friends were thinking about you. I think the best way to celebrate Valentine’s Day, if you are not in a relationship, is to let those around you know you appreciate them for how they have contributed to your life.
You could let your friends know just how much you appreciate the fact that they have been with you through the good times and the bad, or let a mentor know how you appreciate how they never gave up on you, or even simply just thank a co-worker for bringing a smile to your face every day or making you laugh.
I guess what I am getting at here is that we are all alive for a limited time, and I don’t think many of us truly know how many lives we touch or change, how our lives affect others. Even small acts of kindness can go a long way and can have a big impact on people’s lives.
I think Valentine’s Day is the perfect day to let someone know how they have impacted your life.
Is a reporter for The Standard Newspaper, so if you see him, feel free to say hello. You can follow Dan on Twitter at @dancearnsy