Toronto Maple Leafs Still Need to Make Moves and Mitch Marner Isn't One of Them

Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game One
Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game One / Brian Fluharty/GettyImages
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The Toronto Maple Leafs 2024-25 roster is pretty much set after Day 1 of free agency, but the team still needs to make three important moves, and Mitch Marner isn't one of them.

As expected, Mitch Marner is going to be a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs during the 2024-25 season. As much as some of us would have loved to see change, GM Brad Treliving added solid depth on defense, without subtracting their superstar forward.

I personally think he gave too much money and term to some of his signings, but at the same time, their defensive unit is better than it was yesterday.

As for goaltending, if both Anthony Stolarz and Joseph Woll can stay healthy for the season, they'll make a great 1A/1B tandem, with hopes that their competition will lead to a legitimate starter for Game 1 of the playoffs. I'd prefer a legitimate superstar in net, but that just wasn't a solution for the Leafs this offseason, so hopefully Stolarz and Woll at only $3.5M can do the trick, instead.

As for the rest of the roster, the Leafs will once again be a good regular season team, but they need much improvement in bottom-six and it starts with these three moves. They need to trade David Kampf, Calle Jarnkrok and Ryan Reaves immediately.

Leafs Should Look at Signing Tyler Johnson

Those three players make a combined $5.8M and need to be replaced with better talent who can contribute. The Leafs should give one of, if not both, Fraser Minten and Easton Cowan a legitimate look this year, plus Nick Robertson, which means they can replace that $5.8M with roughly $3M for those players, giving them $2.8M to spend on another depth scoring option.

So who should that player be? Well, I think you could find lightning in a bottle (pun intended) by signing Tyler Johnson, who's currently a UFA. After getting priced out by the Tampa Bay Lightning, Johnson has spent a few seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks and has still contributed nicely. He scored 17 goals on a terrible team last year, proving that he still has some solid offense left in him.

The reason why Johnson should be a must-get for Toronto is because of his playoff experience. Johnson has 32 goals and 65 points in 116 playoff games and could be that depth forward Toronto is missing. At 34-years-old, Johnson can be that perfect third-line winger who can play in the top-six if neccesary.

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With four 20-plus goal scoring seasons, Johnson would be a great fit in Toronto's bottom-six and is exactly what they're missing. I think they could get him for less than $3M AAV at this point too, so he'd be a great replacement for Kampf, Reaves and Jankrok as he'd bring a solid veteran presence as the team looks to go younger in their bottom forward group.