Toronto Maple Leafs Should Trade for One of These Defensemen

Apr 4, 2023; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames defenseman Chris Tanev (8) skates during the warmup period against the Chicago Blackhawks at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 4, 2023; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames defenseman Chris Tanev (8) skates during the warmup period against the Chicago Blackhawks at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mike Matheson, Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens
Nov 16, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens defenseman Mike Matheson (8) Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports /

#4 Mike Matheson – Montreal Canadiens

Mike Matheson would be a great fit on the Toronto Maple Leafs for a few reasons.

He’s become an excellent two-way defenseman and leads the Montreal Canadiens in ice-time.

He puts up points, blocks a lot of shots and could quarterback the Leafs second powerplay unit.

He’s definitely a defensive upgrade to Klingberg and though he’s not as gifted offensively as Klingberg, he’s no slouch either.

There has apparently been a lot of interest for Matheson around the NHL and with Montreal’s current stable of younger defensemen, they could be willing to part with Matheson who will soon be entering his 30’s.

Matheson still has two years left on his contract after this season which is appealing to a lot of teams, but the Toronto Maple Leafs may prefer the cap flexibility of a UFA if they’re planning to resign William Nylander.

Mike Matheson’s current cap hit is $4.875 million which isn’t too far off from John Klingberg’s $4.15 million.

Matheson does have an 8 team no-trade clause, but I don’t see why he wouldn’t want to join the Toronto Maple Leafs.