Toronto Maple Leafs Should Look to Act Prior to Trade Deadline

The Toronto Maple Leafs should be active at the trade deadline, but let’s hope he does the heavy lifting beforehand. And that he focuses his attention on Defense. Much like what happened in 2019.

That was the year the Toronto Maple Leafs acquired Jake Muzin from the LA Kings.

March 21 might be too far off to think about now, but it’s time to start paying attention to it because talks are heating up as teams prep to beat the trade deadline.

There’s no “Kmart Blue Light Special,” as Brian Burke likes to put it, but Dubas and others GMs throughout the league like to get their shopping done early to avoid making rash decisions and paying through the nose. (info from capfriendly.com).

Toronto Maple Leafs and the NHL Trade Deadline

Here’s a look at two instances in which Kyle did his shopping early:

Pre Trade Deadline #1

January 28th –1 month prior to 2019 February 25th trade deadline

Jake Muzzin for Carl Grundstrom, Sean Durzi, and 1st (2019)

Pre-Trade Deadline #2

February 5th – 3 weeks prior to 2020 February 24th trade deadline

Jack Campbell and Kyle Clifford for Trevor Moore, 3rd (2020), and conditional 3rd (2021)

Leafs 2022 Pre Trade Deadline Edition

This year’s edition should be more akin to 2019, as Dubas is more likely to be hunting for solid (or worn-out) gold than stumbling upon a nugget of a hidden gem.

Moreover, if Leafs Nation is hollering for D, Kyle might see otherwise.

Regardless, let’s take a look at doubtful, possible, hopeful, not out-of-question, and more-likely D – minute-munching D – that Dubas might try to pursue.

Doubtful

Jakob Chychrun

Snatching up this coming-of-age left-shot D at a cap hit of $4.6 M through 2024-25 when D of his ilk are going for millions more might be too good to pass up.

Possible

Mark Giordano

Keefe may be content playing T.J. alongside Morgan, but how about reuniting Brodie with longtime success partner Giordano? Lines juggling isn’t ideal. Just a thought. Does it help he’s from Toronto?

Hopeful

John Klingberg

The Stars are on the fringe of a playoff race, and they may see it through without ex-top D Klingberg. Theoretically, a right-shooting defenseman like tis should thrive with the Leafs’ puck-possession system.

Out-of-the-question

Ramus Ristolainen

After a coaching change and still no difference to show for it, the Flyers are on the verge of going rogue. Other teams might be interested, but unless the Leafs have done a complete about face on how they analyze players, they’d likely have no interest in this player.

More Likely

P.K. Subban

Subban has a cannon for a shot. He enjoys letting it rip, too. Dare I say the Leafs haven’t had a threat on the blueline like that since Al Iafrate? He likes the offensive game, much to the chagrin of defensive-minded teams and coaches; luckily for him, the Leafs and Keefe aren’t one of them.

The NHL Trade Deadline is one of the most exciting times on the hockey calendar, and no matter which player the Leafs choose to pursue, my advice is to act early.