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NHL Agent Survey Ranks Mitch Marner High as a Top Trade Candidate

An anonymous survey among NHL agents lists Mitch Marner in the top three of most likely traded high-profile players this year.

Mitch Marner Toronto Maple Leafs trade candidate

If you were to read the survey results from a collection of respected NHL agents when asked which high-profile NHL stars that might be on the move in the coming season, it probably wouldn’t come as a shock to hear Jack Eichel or Patrik Laine’s name in the mix. But, the player who ranked third in a survey among some agents comes as a bit of a surprise.

Related: Maple Leafs Done Making Offseason Moves, Including No PTOs

NHL insider Craig Custance submitted a survey to 21 NHL agents and asked them a series of questions that covered a wide range of topics. Among the most interesting was their responses to which big-name NHL stars might be on the move within a year’s time. For obvious reasons, the agents wanted to remain anonymous, but the two players who topped the list were Laine and Eichel. Guess who came in third… Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mitch Marner.

Why Mitch Marner?

It’s not that Marner’s name has never been in the rumor mill before. A Maple Leafs team that often has cap issues, fans of that organization have grown accustomed to Marner’s name being out there. In fact, they’ve often thrown Marner’s name out there, especially when he’s not played up to the heights of his ability.

But, many of the agents in the survey seemed to think that general manager Kyle Dubas has put himself in a difficult situation with his three big contracts, and, at some point, Dubas is going to have to fix his mistake. The problem is, trading the player that should go, won’t be easy.

via the hockey writers

When asked for more information about why Marner, the agent explained, as per Custance:

“They shouldn’t have signed John Tavares. His skating is declining every year. They should have just focused on the two younger kids and used the money elsewhere. I know it’s great to have the two centers … but you can’t have three players making over $10 million.”

Essentially, what this agent is saying is that the Leafs should trade Tavares. The problem is, they can’t. With a full no-move clause and a massive salary to boot, the Leafs will have to trade someone else. That someone else would be Marner, even if it’s not the best move for the organization.

Some may argue that this is just the opinion on one agent. But, it’s not really. Three agents named him as their top choice and a second anonymous agent, who didn’t specify why, also had Marner going elsewhere in the coming year. He figured at first someone else, but changed his mind. He said, “Taylor Hall? Actually, I’m going go way off and say Mitch Marner.”

What do you think? Can Dubas continue to make little changes and build a winning team? Or, will he eventually need to bite the bullet and trade a big star?

Also Read: Bobby Ryan Details Why He Chose Red Wings in NHL Free Agency

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