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December 17, 2018 10:42 PM Some fine-tuning should help Toronto Raptors get to the next level

Much of the confusion and disruption is the result of injuries and absences for a variety of reasons, but coach Nick Nurse is still doing a lot of experimenting with groupings at this point in the season. They’ve yet to come up with a consistent rotation that staggers the playing time of key components like Leonard and Lowry to ensure one of them is on the court 168

December 17, 2018 3:30 PM Controversial appointment of Ron Taverner as OPP commissioner cast into further doubt as he heads back to Toronto police job

The veteran Toronto police officer said Saturday he was temporarily stepping aside “out of the greatest respect for the brave men and women of the Ontario Provincial Police.” The government agreed to the request and noted it retains “full confidence” in him. The hiring process raised eyebrows because it included a lowering of qualifications that cleared 191

December 17, 2018 3:30 PM Ron Taverner back with Toronto police after he rescinds resignation

Taverner said Saturday he was temporarily stepping aside “out of the greatest respect for the brave men and women of the Ontario Provincial Police.” The government agreed to the request and noted it retains “full confidence” in him. Career police officers with higher rank than Taverner were rejected in favour of him, including a former Ontario head of the RCMP with more experience 135

December 17, 2018 3:00 PM First World War soldiers come to vivid life in They Shall Not Grow Old, screening on Monday across Toronto

But the Oscar-winning director (The Lord of the Rings) opens the film with traditional black-and-white footage depicting the prelude to the global conflict that ended a century ago. As the war escalates, Jackson propels the viewer directly into the battle. The first unforgettable scene pulls in close — in colour and in 3D — on a young soldier, with exploding 172

December 14, 2018 5:00 PM They’re the best: The Star’s Top Ten Books of 2018

Our reviewers have spoken. Here in the Books pages of the Toronto Star, we review hundreds of titles every year; some are smaller, capsule reviews, others longer and more analytical. They span the breadth of fiction and non-fiction, international and Canadian writers. Out of those hundreds, we came up with the top ten books of the year. We had a first 150

December 14, 2018 3:36 AM Game Centre: Lightning’s Vasilevskiy steals one from Maple Leafs

As it turned out, here was the chief takeaway from Toronto’s 4-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning: Sometimes you get beat by a superior goaltender — or possibly, a super human. In this case it was Andrei Vasilevskiy, who announced his return from a 15-game injury absence with a monstrous 48-save performance in the crease. Toronto outshot the Lightning 156

December 13, 2018 6:21 PM Toronto council approves using 11 surplus properties for affordable housing

Council unanimously approved using 11 city-owned surplus lands to try to build new affordable housing on Thursday. The vote followed a move by Mayor John Tory announcing the use of those city lands, what would contribute to the existing “Open Door” housing program started under Tory’s tenure last term. But it’s not yet clear how the lands will be developed 305

December 13, 2018 3:45 PM Toronto and Vancouver most ‘vulnerable’ to interest rate hikes, says CMHC

Canadians living in two of the country’s largest cities may find themselves more “vulnerable” to interest rate increases as personal debt levels in Toronto and Vancouver continue to hit record-levels, warns a report by Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. The housing agency says the debt-to-income (DTI) ratio for those living in Vancouver climbed to 242 per cent in the second 167

December 12, 2018 8:40 PM Barclays’s McFarlane says he heard no solutions from activist Edward Bramson

Barclays Plc’s John McFarlane said the lender is having a “very good” and “civil” dialogue with activist Edward Bramson, who emerged as one of its largest shareholders this year. But the British bank’s outgoing chairman doesn’t think much of Bramson’s ideas. Bramson has been stepping up his campaign to shrink the investment bank — the division at the centre 118

December 12, 2018 8:40 PM Thursday game preview: Toronto Maple Leafs at Tampa Bay Lightning

The two are good friends and both are former No. 1 overall picks: Stamkos in 2008, Tavares in 2009. Stamkos got a hat trick in his last game and has 18 goals, 35 assists in 35 career games against the Leafs. Stamkos has 10 points in his last five games. Tavares has 10 goals, 22 assists in 29 career games against Tampa and leads the Leafs with 19 goals 124