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absolutely in complete disarray,"

  • July 11, 2018 11:38 PM EDT

    TORONTO -- Toronto FC will end its seven-year post-season drought and make the Major League Soccer playoffs next season, MLSE CEO Tim Leiweke promised Tuesday. Maillot Benjamin Mendy France . The underachieving franchise finished 17th in the 19-team league with a 6-17-11 record this season. "Our soccer team is absolutely in complete disarray," said Leiweke, drawing laughs during an Empire Club luncheon speech about the future of MLSE teams and plans to improve them. But the Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment boss said change is coming. "The team we turn the quickest will be TFC and well turn them next year," he said. "Mark it down, write it down, film it .... Were going to turn TFC around and were going to make the playoffs next year. We know where were headed, we know how to get there. Weve been given the resources of this ownership group and we will get to the right place." Leiweke, who brought David Beckham to the Los Angeles Galaxy, says he knows how to work the designated player rules in the league. The soccer team has money to add designated players and still have about a third of its salary cap to sign two or three veteran MLS players. In detailing the MLSE clubs and their chances of success, he pointed to the hockey club first. "The Leafs are close," he said. Like the New York Yankees are to baseball and the Dallas Cowboys to football, the Leafs must become "the greatest hockey team in the history of the National Hockey League." "Toronto is the heart and soul of the great game of hockey," he said. Leiweke made headlines after taking over in July when he said he already had a championship parade route in his mind for the Leafs. He did not back down from that Tuesday. "I could not be more excited about the parade route and were going to throw you one, I promise," he said. Championships, he said are "not an unreasonable expectation," at MLSE. Leiweke ruffled feathers early in his tenure when he suggested some of the photos of past Leafs greats should be taken down at the Air Canada Centre. "No disrespect to the history and tradition of the 100 years of the Toronto Maple Leafs or any of the great players that have put on that jersey," he said Tuesday. "But these players know its now time to put their pictures up on the wall. Its time for us to hang Stanley Cup banners." As for the Raptors, he said it was tough to build an NBA team on the fly because of salary cap restrictions. Luck and skill are needed in drafting players, plus intelligence in signing other players. "To be honest with you, we havent done that here. And Im not blaming anybody. Now the blames on us." He dismissed the belief that NBA players dont want to come to Toronto. And he said the current roster is "ticked off" that some pundits are already writing them off. "Theyre out to prove something this year," he said of the Raptors, who open their season Wednesday. Build a winning culture and players will come to Toronto, he added. On other matters, Leiweke said: -- The chances of an NFL team coming to Toronto in the next decade are "pretty good." -- Given 17 of 19 Toronto FC games were played in rain at BMO Field this season, "weve got to put an end to that, its time to put a roof on BMO Field." -- At the requests of the city of Toronto, which owns BMO Field, MLSE is looking at whether the venue can be changed to accommodate the CFL. "The Argos are part of a conversation, not a decision thats been made." -- MLSE is looking at whether a larger block of tickets should be freed up to get some new Leafs fans in the ACC to make the venue livelier. -- The NHL needs to put hockey in the Seattle-Portland marketplace, as well as returning a team in Quebec. And that such expansion -- as well as possibly in Las Vegas and Kansas City -- is needed to grow the sport before talk of a second franchise in the Toronto area. Maillot Lucas Hernandez France . Advancing to the Champions League quarterfinals should be a formality after Lionel Messi scored a penalty and Dani Alves added a late second to secure a commanding 2-0 advantage over City in the round of 16 on Tuesday. Maillot Antoine Griezmann France . It was the first game back in Columbus for Rangers star Rick Nash, the Blue Jackets franchise leader in goals, assists and games. He was given a standing ovation during a video tribute in the first period, but was booed loud and long after a second-period, two-handed shove up high on Columbus goalie Sergei Bobrovsky.Two teams separated by three games in the Eastern Conference standings clash tonight north of the border, as the Toronto Raptors play host to the Washington Wizards. The Raptors are third in the East behind Indiana and Miami, while the Wizards are three games behind the Atlantic Division leaders in the fifth spot. Catch all the action live on TSN and TSN Radio 1050 at 7pm et/4pm pt. Toronto is five games ahead of Brooklyn in the Atlantic and will also host Golden State and Sacramento on the homestand. It has won three straight and six of seven games, including Tuesdays 99-93 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. DeMar DeRozan poured in 33 points, Terrence Ross netted 19 and Kyle Lowry added 13 points with nine assists for the Raptors, who found a way to win despite shooting 44.3 percent and making 10-of-32 3-pointers. Lowry scored 14 or more points in eight straight games from Feb. 5-23, then was held to a point below that mark against the Cavs. "Youre not going to have great games all the time, youre not going to shoot 10-for-12 or 20-for-30. Youre always going to have some type of off-game," Lowry said. "You cant let that stop you from helping your team win a game. I wasnt making my shots, but I know I can still help the team." The Raptors are 11-3 at home since Jan. 1 and 16-11 at Air Canada Centre. They have also held their opponent under 100 points in a season high-tying six consecutive gaames. Maillot Hugo Lloris France 2018. . Toronto is 27-7 when doing that this season. Meanwhile, DeRozan is averaging 25.7 ppg in February for the Raptors, who are ensured of a winning record for a third month in a row. Toronto was 8-6 in December, 11-6 in January and currently has a 7-4 mark in February. Washington enters the great white north on a four-game winning streak. The Wizards, who will also visit Philadelphia on its quick quest, disposed of the Orlando Magic 115-106 on Tuesday thanks to four players with 20-plus points. John Wall led the Wizards with 27 points, Trevor Ariza had 22 and both Marcin Gortat and Bradley Beal netted 21. "I thought we came out really energized. We got great performances from everybody," said Wizards coach Randy Wittman. The Wizards, who made 52.5 percent from the field and hit 10-of-16 3-pointers, led by as many as 17 a day after learning forward Nene would miss around six weeks with a sprained MCL in his left knee. Washington is 11-6 in its last 17 road games and is averaging 99.8 ppg in that stretch. Wall has 18.6 points and 7.8 assists over that time. The Wizards are 14-14 overall away from D.C. this season. Toronto has defeated Washington three times already this season and is unbeaten in four straight and six of the last eight meetings between the teams. The Wizards havent succeeded much lately in Canada, losing seven of eight and 11 of the past 15 trips there. Youth NFL Jerseys Cheap Disocunt Football Jerseys China Jerseys Wholesale Authentic Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping China NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Wholesale ' ' '