#6 – Nazem Kadri
Nazem Kadri is a name the Leafs and their fans know very well. He was a favorite in the city despite finding ways to be suspended. Kadri was suspended five times at critical moments. He received a three-game-suspension for interference in November 2013, four was handed out for an illegal check to the head in March 2015, four more for cross-checking in April 2016, three games for boarding (April 2018), and five for cross-checking in April 2019.
Kadri spent 10 years in Toronto before he was traded to the Avalanche in a blockbuster deal. The center’s move to Mile-High City has been very beneficial for him as he’s recorded his career best numbers. This year, he has registered 26 goals and 57 assists for a total of 83 points in 65 games.
Kadri is now 31-years-old and will have the opportunity to get himself a raise. This season, he is being paid $4.5 million as part of the six-year $27 million contract negotiated by former Maple Leafs General Manager Lou Lamoriello.
The reality is that thanks to Kadri’s production, he’s likely priced his way out of Toronto. Even if he wanted to return, the only way to get the London, Ontario native back to the Big Smoke would be for him to take a hometown discount. There’s no reason to believe that that would happen considering that it took Kadri to leave the Leafs to elevate his game to another level. However, if there is a way to reunite the Maple Leafs with their 2009 seventh-overall draft pick, it would drastically improve team production.