What The Toronto Maple Leafs Need To Do With All Their Pending Free Agents

Which Pending Free Agents The Toronto Maple Leafs Need To Resign
Which Pending Free Agents The Toronto Maple Leafs Need To Resign / Elsa/GettyImages
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Forget the Rest, Leafs Need to Cut the Dead Weight

The other pending free agents are Connor Dewar, Noah Gregor, Joel Edmundson, Mark Giordano, Ilya Lybushkin, T.J. Brodie, Martin Jones and Ilya Samsonov.

Of this group, the Torotno Maple Leafs do not need to sign any of these guys.

However, Noah Gregor and Connor Dewar would be welcome to come back on the fourth line. Gregor has phenomenal speed, which the Maple Leafs need to improve in their bottom six forwards; he is a great forechecker and is fearless in throwing his weight around.

Last season, Dewar graded in the top six percent of forwards in defensive wins above replacement. In addition, these guys graded in the top 20 percent of forwards in penalty kill wins above replacement. 

As for the rest, the Leafs front office just needs to forget about them.

Samsonov needs a fresh start somewhere else; he was horrendous for most of the regular season and terrible in the playoffs.

Edmundson and Lybushkin are about as mobile as the CN Tower, and both gave the puck away more than twice as many times as they took it away from the other team.

Brodie is another statue that is a horrendous puck mover. Even though he would come at a massive discount compared to his last contract, he is not even worth considering, even at the league minimum; it was evident that Brodie lost more than a step this season.

Jones did a great job as the Maple Leaf's third goalie, but he is optional; the Leafs need to save all the cap space they can to figure out the starting roster before finding a third goalie.

Finally, let's talk about Giordano, the only guy on this list for whom I have a soft spot. He will turn 41 before the next season starts and has blocked the most shots of any player in NHL history. He dealt with many injuries last season, and his body may just be starting to break down. He could come back and play the seventh defenseman role, but in an ideal world, that would be Simon Benoit's role. It is time for Giordano to hang it up after a long, successful career.


If the Toronto Maple Leafs resign Bertuzzi, Robertson, and Liljegren and bring in two legitimate top-four defensemen and a goalie to work in tandem with Joseph Woll, this roster will be good enough to compete for the Stanley Cup without doing something ridiculously dumb like trading Mitch Marner, as many people are suggesting.