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Maple Leafs Open to Acquiring Players With Term in Deadline Trades

The Toronto Maple Leafs aren’t eager to get burned like they did last season and are open to the idea to trading for players with term.

According to NHL insider Chris Johnston, the Toronto Maple Leafs are willing to add rentals ahead of this year’s deadline, but the team is cautious about being burned like they were last year. If GM Kyle Dubas is going to pay a premium price for a player, including possibly moving the team’s first-round draft pick for the third year in a row, it sounds like he’d prefer to have some control over the player he adds beyond the rest of this season.

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Johnston noted in his most recent TSN Insider Trading report that the Maple Leafs are open to the idea of adding players with term. He explains:

Well, certainly they’re at the stage where you start to assemble wish lists, look around the league in anticipation of that March 21st trade deadline, and I think if the Leafs, all things being equal, could control things, they’d rather acquire a player who has a little bit of term left on their contract rather than a straight rental.

Johnston points to last year’s deadline when Dubas was quite aggressive and made multiple deals, all for players on expiring contracts. He wound up giving away six draft picks the big deal, adding Nick Foligno was among the worst moves made by any team last season at the deadline.

Kyle Dubas Maple Leafs NHL GM
Kyle Dubas Maple Leafs NHL GM

Johnston adds, “so ultimately the Leafs won’t rule anything out. I think that they’re just looking to get as many good players as they can, but they like the idea of getting players with some term because they feel like it gives them [a] chance to get settled in.”

Leafs in on Jakob Chychrun?

Darren Dreger responded to the report about the Leafs and pointed out that Arizona Coyotes’ defenceman Jakob Chychrun has term left on his contract. He added that the Maple Leafs are among many teams who have at least kicked tires on Chychrun. Dreger does admit that Chychrun would be a tough fit and that Dubas would have to get “extraordinarily creative” to make it work.

The teams still most likely to add Chychrun includes Florida, Boston, Anaheim and the St. Louis Blues. Apparently, the New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings have pulled out of the running for now.

Next: Would Be a Mistake for Maple Leafs to Rely Solely on Jack Campbell



  1. afp1961

    January 26, 2022 at 2:15 pm

    If Dubas wants to add players with term it certainly opens up more options that what is shaping up to be a crowded competition for the UFA players.

    However with no cap space it means roster players MUST GO. Dubas knows he needs to move bodies out anyway for next year so if he could acquire someone that fits his roster construction better than say someone like Kerfoot, for today and tomorrow, than he should be going for it.

    Obvious roster players that can exit include:
    #1: Kerfoot
    #2: Ritchie
    #3: Mrazek
    #4: Dermott
    #5: Holl
    #6: Either Sandin or Lilygren

    I wouldn’t be opposed to moving Mikheyev or Kase if the right return could be had. Unlikely Dubas can afford them next year anyway.

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