Considering their lead in the North Division and with the team atop the NHL’s overall standings with an 11-2-1 record and 23 points, it wouldn’t make a lot of sense for the Toronto Maple Leafs to go out of their way to add another piece. After all, reports are that both Joe Thornton and Nick Robertson are close to making their return and there are already questions/concerns about rocking the boat for a team that is on a roll.
TSN’s Darren Dreger was part of an interview on TSN 1050 this week and was asked about previous rumors the Maple Leafs might be in the market for a depth forward. Insiders like Elliotte Friedman believed GM Kyle Dubas might have his toes dipped into the trade market waters. Dreger didn’t shoot those rumors down, but noted there is “zero panic on that bench or around the organization, or zero pressure to add a piece.”
That doesn’t mean the Maple Leafs won’t add. It just means they’re not in a hurry to. Dreger suggested that Dubas and the rest of the Leafs management team sees the hockey club as contenders. He likes the pieces they have, where the team is at and they will constantly be monitoring the situation to see if they can give the current club the assets they need that might get them over the top.
It could explain recent rumors that the Leafs have reportedly kicked tires on a player like Sam Bennett.
Dubas Might Feel Like He Owes This Team
With the start the Maple Leafs have gotten off to this season, Dreger suggests there might be a feeling like Dubas owes it to the Leafs to continually work to improve the club, no matter how hot they get.
As a result, Dreger notes:
So if he’s going to add, it’s likely going to be up front or a defensemen but only in the sense that they want to make sure that this team is as deep as you need to be to challenge for the Stanley Cup. It wouldn’t be through a sense of urgency or necessity.”
And, if there’s a deal out there that makes sense and it doesn’t remove a key piece from the roster or mortgage the club’s future.. why not? The season is still relatively young but the Leafs look good. If you know you’ve got a winning formula, you do what you can to keep the momentum going.
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