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Maple Leafs in Trade Market for a Forward

The Toronto Maple Leafs have some holes to fill at forward thanks to recent injuries. They might searching the trade market for a solution.

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With key injuries to key forwards, the Toronto Maple Leafs might have some issues the need addressing in the not-too distant future. Because some of the Leafs important forwards have gone down with injuries which are deemed to be long-term, reports on Saturday are that the hockey club might be dipping their toes into the trade market to see if there’s a replacement option available.

Related: Maple Leafs Injury News and Rumors: Matthews, Thornton, Robertson

Specifically, when the organization lost two-thirds of their top line thanks to an injury to Joe Thornton and news Auston Matthews wasn’t feeling well, it meant a complete overhaul to their line combinations. Of course, the team was already struggling to reshuffle things when Nick Robertson’s knee injury was deemed fairly serious. Now what?

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported on Saturday Headlines that the Maple Leafs might be looking to acquire another forward, one that could step into the team’s top nine and provide some depth where players like Alexander Barabanov and Wayne Simmonds have failed to do so. Neither has scored through six games this season and the Leafs don’t have the depth they did last year after moving Andreas Johnsson and Kasperi Kapanen.

While Matthews isn’t expected to be out of the lineup long, the Leafs might want to see what’s out there, hints Friedman. Because they don’t have much cap space to work with, to land what they need, it might require moving a defenseman.

Travis Dermott Maple Leafs

Can the Leafs Afford to Lose a Defenseman?

If reports the Maple Leafs are willing to move a blueliner for a forward are accurate, they’ll need to tread carefully. This is a team who came into this season with a mandate to improve their blue line corps. If they move a player, they’ll need to be sure that someone like Mikko Lehtonen or top prospect Rasmus Sandin can step in.

So too, because the Leafs can’t add a player with significant salary, what they do acquire will have to be low cost but skilled enough to be an upgrade over what they already have and isn’t necessarily working. The last thing GM Kyle Dubas wants to do is move a defenseman for a forward that doesn’t move the needle.

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