2 Players the Toronto Maple Leafs Should Definitely Not Trade

SUNRISE, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 27: Alexander Kerfoot #15 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates with the puck against the Florida Panthers during the first period at BB&T Center on February 27, 2020 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
SUNRISE, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 27: Alexander Kerfoot #15 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates with the puck against the Florida Panthers during the first period at BB&T Center on February 27, 2020 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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The Toronto Maple Leafs are in a pretty good position for next season.

Though the NHL’s salary cap might not rise as expected, the Toronto Maple Leafs should still be in good shape next season.

The Leafs have signed Alex Barabanov and Mikko Lehtenon on the cheap, and those players, along with over ten million committed to Kasperi Kapanen, Alex Kerfoot and Andreas Johnsson should allow the Leafs the proper flexibility to improve their roster this summer.

Or whenever the actual off-season is.

But there are two players the Toronto Maple Leafs should never trade.

2 Players the Toronto Maple Leafs Can’t Afford to Trade

The Leafs might not have to trade anyone.  Personally, I don’t think they have to.  With Ceci and Barrie most likely leaving, the Leafs have internal options to fill out the roster and it will be perfectly fine.

If I was in charge, I’d let Clifford walk (too expensive unless he takes a 50% pay-cut) and I wouldn’t re-sign Ilya Mikheyev (I prefer Andreas Johnsson).

But, if the Leafs do make a trade, there are four main candidates to move, and I think two of them need to be retained at all costs.

Alex Kerfoot, Kasperi Kapanen, Andreas Johnsson and Travis Dermott are clearly the Toronto Maple Leafs most likely to be traded.

However, the team should avoid trading Kerfoot and Dermott no matter what.

Travis Dermott has some of the best stats in the NHL for a defenseman over the past three years.  Yes, he has done it from the third pairing, but he gives the Leafs an edge over almost all other third pairing players.

If you compare him to defenseman his age, he’s among the best there is.  He’s only going to get better and he is on pace to be a high impact player, though he likely won’t ever score enough to be an outright superstar.

Still, I don’t think teams should ever trade 23 year old defensemen who put up the numbers in the NHL from age 21-23 that Travis Dermott did.

The other player the Toronto Maple Leafs need to retain is Alex Kerfoot.  Kefoot is among the best defensive players in the NHL and he is hands-down the Leafs best defensive forward.

He brings things to the team that no one else does, and as such they can’t afford to lose him.  Also he scored at the same 5v5 rate as John Tavares did, and his ability to play top-six minutes on left wing makes him extremely valuable.

Next. Why the Leafs Shouldn't Rush to Trade Travis Dermott. dark

In the end, I would prefer the Leafs keep Kapanen and Johnsson (especially Johnsson) but they absolutely cannot trade Kerfoot or Dermott.