The Toronto Maple Leafs have been rumoured all year to be interested in Montreal Canadiens defenseman Ben Chiarot.
The Toronto Maple Leafs lost to Montreal last year in the playoffs, despite the horrible play of Ben Chiarot.
Why would the Leafs have interest in a terrible, slow defender who spends more time in his own end than Roman Polak?
In fact, why trade any assets at all when you could just get the real Roman Polak back from (presumably) Robidas Island?
Toronto Maple Leafs and Ben Chiarot
The Chiarot-to-Toronto rumours have been almost non-stop all season long. I find this concerning because he would be the Leafs 8th best defenseman, after: Rielly, Muzzin, Brodie, Sandin, Liljegren, Holl, and Dermott.
The Leafs have picked up 80% of the points available to them for the last three months, and the last thing they need is a checking defenseman to slow the game down and keep them hemmed in their own end for minutes at a time.
Check out the various charts below, and keep in mind that Chiarot’s current WAR is 1%, meaning that in 2022 he has been something approaching the worst player in the NHL.
If it is true that the Toronto Maple Leafs want Chiarot, I would be surprised, because he is antithetical to pretty much everything they’ve ever done. They built their team on skill and players who can move the puck. Chiarot is not one of those.
The Leafs haven’t lost a single playoff game due to their blueline in the Kyle Dubas era. They have never lost a single playoff game because they weren’t tough enough.
They lost to Columbus because they couldn’t score, even though they were the highest scoring team in the NHL.
They lost to Montreal because they couldn’t score, even though……you get the point. When you lose only because your best strength failed you, you didn’t really lose – you just got unlucky.
Ben Chiarot will not help the Toronto Maple Leafs win a playoff series. The misguided idea that you have to get tougher for the playoffs is outdated, annoying and frankly, stupid. The Leafs would be better served doing what got them this far: concentrating on puck possession, puck movement and smart play. That is their game. Chiarot doesn’t fit it.
Acquiescing to backwards thinking when you’re the most progressive team in the league is just silly. I wouldn’t pick this player up off waivers, and I doubt the Leafs would either. I wouldn’t let him hold Timothy Liljegren’s water bottle, let alone take his lineup spot. (naturalsattrick.com).
Bad rumour, bad idea and let’s all just hope the Toronto Maple Leafs are smarter than this.
In last year’s playoffs, during 5v5 play, the Leafs outshot Montreal 104-63 when Chiarot was on the ice. The Leafs had an expected goals rating of 64% when Chiarot was on the ice. Basically, whenever the Habs put out their most overrated defenseman, the Leafs feasted.
This is a bad player the Leafs should not be interested in.