No. 1: Nick Ritchie
Despite being a terrible signing by the Leafs this season and clearing waivers, there could be a team that finds trading for Ritchie useful.
It’ll more than likely be a bottom-feeder team like Arizona who would take a flyer on him, but his contract and previous stats could make him a valuable asset for a team.
Last season, Ritchie scored 15 goals and has a ton of size. If you looked at his stats alone and didn’t watch his game closely, you’d think that Ritchie would have been the perfect Hyman replacement on the first line for Toronto this year.
He’d create space for Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner and potentially score 20 goals by mistake. However, if you’ve watched every Leafs game this year, it’s clear it hasn’t worked and it’s clear that Ritchie should never play another game with this roster.
He’s slow, can’t score and takes the worst penalties ever. He’s a complete disaster, but at $2.5M for one more season and over 300 games of NHL experience, there’s definitely another NHL team out there that would trade for him.
Toronto would more than likely have to give up a high draft pick or prospect in order to ditch Ritchie, but that’s definitely worth it to see him play somewhere else.