The Toronto Maple Leafs have been eliminated again. Could the New Jersey Devils try to take advantage of a situation where the Leafs look to reshuffle the deck after another early exit?
Another year, and another disappointing end for the Toronto Maple Leafs. For the sixth year in a row, the Leafs have been knocked out of the first round of the playoffs. The past five years saw the Leafs’ season end in a do-or-die game. It’s a massive failure for the most popular NHL franchise. This could become an opportunity for the New Jersey Devils.
Every year, we talk about how the Devils and Maple Leafs could be good partners in a trade. Honestly, the Devils might have the type of players the Leafs might be looking for. The Leafs will want complimentary young players who can fit around an incredible top six. Michael McLeod, Nathan Bastian, Miles Wood, and Pavel Zacha might all be players the Leafs want. Then, there are those constant Damon Severson rumors about Toronto’s desire to take him.
This isn’t just about trades. Anything can happen in Toronto, and everything is on the table. The Devils should look at that roster and see who might be available. This is a city of overreaction. The Maple Leafs have been a franchise of overreaction, however, that hasn’t been how it worked for this current era. Kyle Dubas has been extremely patient with a core of greatness. However, he has two more seasons of Auston Matthews before becoming an unrestricted free agent. Mitch Marner and John Tavares only have three more seasons left after this one.
This was supposed to be an era where the Leafs won a bevy of Stanley Cups, but they have just two years left before the likely Hart Trophy winner can go to Arizona or wherever he wants. With that kind of urgency, we could see a major move from Toronto this offseason. The Devils might have some of the right pieces to make it happen.