How the Toronto Maple Leafs Could Regain Their Top-Team Status

Dec 23, 2023; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs right wing William Nylander (88) looks to
Dec 23, 2023; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs right wing William Nylander (88) looks to / Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports
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6. Bring Up Topi and Mikko

Nothing has been so frustrating this season as watching Kokkonen and Niemela thrive with the Marlies while the Leafs ice the NHL's worst blue-line.

The way in which this organization babies their prospects is bizarre and annoying. There is a reason that outside of the top of the first round, they have pretty much failed completely during the last decade to develop any NHL players of consequence.

TJ Brodie has declined to the point where he could maybe be an OK third pairing player. The Leafs blue-line as a whole isn't physical and it's not especially good at moving the puck. What, then, is the point of it?

An ELITE NHL team might have Jake McCabe and Timothy Liljegren as an amazing third pairing. Right now they are an OK second pairing. Benoit and Timmins are fine depth players, but the Leafs need some new juice on the blue-line.

It would be nice to trade for a star defenseman. It just isn't likely. Why not insert two rookies into the mix? People act like that's crazy, but how much worse could things actually be for their blue-line? At least this way you save money you can spend elsewhere, and you have upside.

Sure there is risk, but there is also reward.

In conclusion, this Toronto Maple Leafs team is going nowhere, but they have a great core and need to make some changes. Since they are limited in what they can do, they should look for a solid 3C, ideally Elias Lindholm.

Next. The Best Trade Deadline Addition Possible. The Best Trade Deadline Addition Possible. dark

They should play their young players more, and call up some rookies to save some money. After that, changer coaches and call it a day.