3 Big Changes Toronto Maple Leafs Need to Make This Offseason

TORONTO, ON - MAY 20: Assistant coach Manny Malhotra of the Toronto Maple Leafs goes over a power play set-up prior to a faceoff against the Montreal Canadiens in Game One of the First Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on May 20, 2021 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Canadiens defeated the Maple Leafs 2-1 to take a 1-0 series lead. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MAY 20: Assistant coach Manny Malhotra of the Toronto Maple Leafs goes over a power play set-up prior to a faceoff against the Montreal Canadiens in Game One of the First Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on May 20, 2021 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Canadiens defeated the Maple Leafs 2-1 to take a 1-0 series lead. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 4
Next
Toronto Maple Leafs
TORONTO, ON – MAY 27: Shea Weber #6 of the Montreal Canadiens covers Mitchell Marner #16 of the Toronto Maple Leafs . (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /

 No. 3: Trade Mitch Marner

Trading Mitch Marner is not the answer to the Toronto Maple Leafs problems. He’s one of the most gifted players in the NHL and is going to contend for an Art Ross Trophy year-after-year.

However, something has to give. To some, five years seems like an eternity, and to others, it’s just the beginning. With a $10.9M cap-hit, the Leafs could do a ton of things with that money.

As we’ve seen over the past two years, it’s tough to win when you’re relying on four guys for the bulk of the offense. Instead of using Marner’s contract on his services, why not grab two $4M wingers to play with Auston Matthews and a $3M third-liner?

As we’ve seen in recent years, leading the NHL is points is a pretty useless stat once the playoffs start. Leon Draisaitl, Connor McDavid and Nikita Kucherov are the three recent leaders in NHL scoring and none of their teams made it out of the First Round when they did so.

Also, having three players making over $10M is not working, as shown by the tweet by Pierre LeBrun below:

It’s nice to have someone in the regular season to rely on, but when the playoffs start, you need your depth to step up.

The Boston Bruins top-line has been producing for them in the playoffs, but their three best players are making the same amount as Toronto’s two best. Boston has been able to share the wealth better throughout their roster and the Leafs need to understand that their philosophy isn’t working.

Auston Matthews is a generational talent and can carry the top-line all by himself. Unless this team moves on from John Tavares and William Nylander (which they will never do), then Marner can stay. However, until that happens, you could get a king’s ransom for him in a trade.

Leafs Are NHL's Most Embarrassing Franchise. dark. Next

This is probably all illogical thinking, but that’s the fun of being a Toronto Maple Leafs fan. This team has had the same strategy for the past two years and it hasn’t worked under a different regime, so something has to give.