No. 2: Metropolitan Division
Trade Options: P.K. Subban (New Jersey Devils), Damon Severson (New Jersey Devils), Zdeno Chara (New York Islanders), Andy Greene (New York Islanders), Cal Clutterbuck (New York Islanders), Zach Parise (New York Islanders), Dean Kukan (Columbus Blue Jackets)
If the Toronto Maple Leafs want to win a Stanley Cup, Kyle Dubas should use his connections to make a big trade. As such, who better to call then his old mentor Lou Lamoriello, GM of the New York Islanders.
The Islanders are a complete mess right now. Their season went to shambles from the very beginning after starting the first month on the road and they couldn’t recover. With limited cap-space for the 2022-23 season, they should look to trade their pending UFA’s for assets.
The two names that jump out are Zach Parise and Zdeno Chara.
Although they’re both past their prime, for a two-month playoff-run, I think the Leafs could get the most out of them. Parise scored 25 goals during the 2019-20 season, so it’s not like he’s completely washed-up. Paired on the second-line with John Tavares and Mitch Marner/William Nylander, Parise could turn back the clock and be a big producer, similarly to how Corey Perry was with the Montreal Canadiens and Dallas Stars the past two years.
Chara may be 44-years-old but he’s still intimidating and can help any blue-line. After watching him dominate the Leafs during his days in Boston, Chara could be the veteran leader that Toronto is missing on it’s back-end.
As for the other names, they’re all pipe-dreams because they make too much and/or probably wouldn’t be a fit.