Phil Kessel: The Mock Trades Roundtable

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Torrin Batchelor

Now to get to the age old, will be talked to death until the moment he gets moved and then over-analyzed to death for years afterwards… What is Phil Kessel worth?

What do you pay for a 6 time 30+ goal scorer, and only player to finish in the top 10 of scoring for 3 straight seasons…. before last season. What do you pay for an apparent locker room malcontent and player who avoids the gym like the plague?

Those are all questions we will answer here today, including where oh where will Phil Kessel land?

Leafs nation will see Phil Kessel and John Tavares finally get to play together… on the Brooklyn Islanders.

Anders Lee, Ryan Strome, Griffin Reinhart, Michael Grabner, NYI 1st 2016


Phil Kessel

I might be asking for a tad too much with Strome and Reinhart here, but Phil Kessel will sell tickets and help get John Tavares from star level to superstar level. The Islanders get ticket sales, a big splash and hopefully interest spike in their new Brooklyn market and a true offensive talent to ride shotgun with Tavares.

Michael Grabner by the end of the season was rarely used, and often healthy scratched. He only has a cap hit of 3M next season before becoming a UFA, but his actual salary is 5M. The Islanders although wanting to be aggressive, can’t really afford to pay someone 5M to be a 14th skater.

Meanwhile the Leafs get a MASSIVE head start on their rebuild. Ryan Strome is the No.1 C the Leafs haven’t had since Sundin, for now he can share the role and duties with Nazem Kadri.

Add in power winger Anders Lee capable of playing on any of the top 3 lines and Griffin Reinhart who can step onto the Leafs blue line immediately as well, but would be better served with another year in the AHL.

Griffin will eventually become an excellent addition to Rielly, Gardiner, Percy and Loov on the Leafs blue line of tomorrow. Michael Grabner adds an element of pure speed and defensive acumen to the Leafs middle 6 forwards, he is also deadly on the PK.

The Islanders will be a deep playoff threat with Kessel – assuming they also add another d-man and a more capable backup for Halak. With this in mind, and the fact that their 2015 1st round pick went to Buffalo in the ill-advised Thomas Vanek deal, more compensation is needed as future 1sts aren’t worth a whole lot. This is where the Leafs can get away with asking for Lee, Strome AND Reinhart.

Leaf fans should be chanting Garth Snow’s name come draft day!

Next: Leafs Rumors: Bozak, Bernier

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