No. 1: Justin Braun
If the Toronto Maple Leafs want to make a smart deal that won’t require them to trade any high-end prospects or draft picks, Justin Braun is probably the smartest person to target.
The 35-year-old makes $1.8M and is a pending UFA. At 6-foot-2, 205 pounds, Braun isn’t going to be a puck-moving defenseman that helps the offense, but instead is going to be a reliable and experienced defenseman that won’t hurt the blue-line.
It seems like Jake Muzzin is going to return before the regular season is over, so as a result, Toronto may not have as much cap-space available to them, as potentially expected. As such, the team could still trade for Braun without having to do much math homework.
Braun has close to 800 regular season NHL games of experience, but more importantly, he’s played in 100 playoff games.
He was important piece on the San Jose Sharks blue-line during their many lengthy playoff trips and he could be a great addition to Toronto’s defensive group.