Latest on the Leafs & Canucks – September 21, 2017

by | Sep 21, 2017 | Rumors | 66 comments

Could Roman Polak be an option to bolster the Toronto Maple Leafs’ blueline?

Speculation over the Toronto Maple Leafs trading for a defenseman, plus the Vancouver Canucks could face a tricky situation with blueliner Erik Gudbranson.

TSN: Gord Miller and Dave Poulin joined Leafs Lunch co-host Andi Petrillo yesterday discussing the possibility of the Toronto Maple Leafs shopping for a defenseman before the start of the upcoming season or early in the season.

Miller feels there’s a “50 percent chance” the Leafs are looking around for a blueliner and could offer up one of their good young forwards in return. Poulin doesn’t know who could move, suggesting it could be a good young prospect. They singled out Martin Marincin’s preseason struggles as a reason why they could go shopping for help.

As for potential trade targets, the Los Angeles Kings were brought up, but Poulin sees them in transition and doesn’t think they have available blueline assets. Miller said the Anaheim Ducks would make the most sense, but with Sami Vatanen and Hampus Lindholm sidelined by injuries for months, he doesn’t think they’re a fit.  Petrillo notes the Vegas Golden Knights have plenty of defensemen but Miller doesn’t think they have what the Leafs want. Miller is intrigued by the Dallas Stars, wondering if the Leafs would take a chance on one of their young blueliners.

TORONTO SUN: Lance Hornby reports Roman Polak, who’s in Leafs training camp on a professional tryout on a professional tryout offer, could end up being in the club’s blueline plans in the sixth or seventh spot. He also suggests the “defensive upgrade that most see inevitable via trade could come sooner than later by cashing in one of their forwards for a veteran.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It wouldn’t surprise me if the Leafs are talking with other clubs in search of blueline depth before the start of the season. I can also see them waiting to see how things unfold in the early weeks of 2017-18 before pulling the trigger, which could include bringing back Polak to start the season. 

I agree with the panel’s take on possible trade partners, though I would add the Carolina Hurricanes as a possibility. They’re loaded with good young defensemen and could use more scoring punch, but I think Canes GM Ron Francis will remain patient and see how the season unfolds. 

THE ATHLETIC: Jason Brough reports the 2017-18 season could prove crucial to defenseman Erik Gudbranson’s future with the Vancouver Canucks. If he rebounds from last season’s struggles, he could get a long-term contract extension early in the new year. Another poor performance, however, and the Canucks could be stuck with a low-value asset entering the Feb. 26 trade deadline.

If Gudbranson bounces back but proves too expensive to re-sign, the Canucks could shop him near the deadline. Brough also noted Florida Panthers GM Dale Tallon attempted to reacquire Gudbranson this summer. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gudbranson’s status will be worth watching this season. He could become a decent rental player for postseason contenders seeking a gritty blueline presence. 

 








66 Comments

  1. Im no Leaf lover but the Canucks could use a little Shanaplan these days. Amazing how quickly he got
    the Leafs turned around. Among the GMs Shanahan, Rutheford, Hextall and Yzerman seem to have grasped the draft well, manage your cap never trade your picks away mantra required in the salary cap era. Maybe its time for teams to let the dinosaurs go extinct and give more younger gm’s a shot in the NHL.

    • Rutherford has moved his picks consistently since arriving in Pit. He just moved his 2017 1st sliding back 20 spots to get Reeves. He moved his 2nd in 2020 to Vgs to make sure they selected Fleury, his 2nd in 2017 to get Hainsey, his 3rd in 2016 to get Schultz, His 1st & 3rd in 2016 to get Kessel, his 2nd; 2015, & 4th; 2016, to get Winnik & his 1st in 2015 to get Perron.

      Let’s strike him from that list of “never trade your picks away mantra required in the salary cap era. He’s moved almost all his 1st & 2nd rounders since arriving in Pit, succesfully as well having won 2 cups in the process.

      I could list Yzerman’s trades as well, he’s moved most of his picks as well in his time in TB.

      • And although I was a doubter, I believe Dorion has managed his cap very well, while also dealing away picks here and there.

      • George.

        Not meant to be confrontational but I’m not sure we can grade Dorion’s cap management as yet, he’s only been in place since April 10th of 2016. The end of the 2015-16 season. essentially 1 year.

        He has signed Hoffman to a 4 year deal at 5.1875, Smith 4 years at 3.25, Burrow’s 2 years at 2.5, Pageau 3 years at 3.1, Condon 3 years at 2.4 & signed some of Ott’s draft picks.

        I want to see how he deals with the up coming contract issues with Stone, Turris, Ceci, Wideman, Cleasson & Anderson, all RFA’s or UFA’s next summer & key components, in the 2 years following Karlsson & Brassard the year after then Hoffman & Pageau again.

        1 year isn’t sufficient for me in grading cap management. Dorion inherited almost this entire roster & salary structure. I not enamored with most of his 10 trades he has made so far but in fairness we can’t judge them for at least 5 years.

        Getting Condon for a 5th was sound value but I’m not sure I want to pay my back up 2.4 mil per but with Anderson 36 injury prone & 1 season from US status, coupled with Condon a pending UFA before signing it’s not the end of the world & a decent safety net.

      • The Penguins have found more gold outside of the first round than most teams do in the first round. This year is no exception as they traded away their first round pick but got ZAR and Adam Johnson for free. Johnson went to prospect camp on a tryout and he has played his way into a pro contract and will likely start the season as the 3C. He’s has been excellent in preseason. He is Penguin fast and had instant chemistry with Sheary and Guentzel last night scoring 2 goals and helping Guentzel to a 4 point night. I know it’s preseason but Johnson represents a much better option than some of the garbage that has been bandied about. Rutherfords first season in Pittsburgh was a disaster but he’s had a ton of good fortune since then. The only thing he has to do now is trade a couple of wingers before he loses them for nothing to waivers. Unless they want to pay Hagelen $4 million to play on the fourth line he is a candidate to be moved. The Pens are blessed with having a lot of wingers that can play anywhere in the lineup.

      • And never forget that Jim Rutherford was thought to be a washed-up GM after he left Carolina. He’s done fairly well since then.

      • if I were a Pens fan I’d worry about depth. Crosby and Malkin usually miss at least of handful games a season. Can Guetzel play center for an extended period of time? They sure don’t have much experienced depth at center if there is an injury to one or both of their top centers

      • Agreed Deeeeeeee. Not meant to slight what Pittsburgh has accomplished or tarnish their draft history in Rutherford’s time with what he’s had just a rebuttal to Ron about GM’s retaining their picks. Neither Rutherford nor Yzerman have.

        I slagged the hiring if Rutherford at point of hire. He left Carolina a mess but I have come out chastising myself numerous times now. What Rutherford has accomplished is amazing.

        Pittsburgh has a great chance of winning 3 in a row & if this current group of players 3/5 that have been in place since the 09 cup Win, Malkin, Crosby, Letang & the recently departed Kunitz & Fleury, if not a dynasty now they are right on the cusp of being 1.

        They are for me & Crosby just keeps climbing the ranks of all time greatest players ever. Rutherfords ability to complement this roster with the Rust’s, Kuhneckels, Wilson’s, Rowney’s, Cole’s of the world has been a thing of beauty.

      • Ahh well, Striker, not only are you probably right that Dorion is a cipher, it’s all academic anyway now that the Sun’s resident expert Steve Simmons has exposed the Sens as irrelevant with his recent assessment that, “after Karlsson the Sens have nothing.” May as well mail in the season.

      • pretty sure shero drafted rust. but otherwise yes.

      • A bit early to be talking about winners or losers of this years draft, no? I’ll wait until at least the 4th pre-season game……

      • As we both agree Simmons is an idiot.

        Ottawa is in a great spot, in Chabot; drafted by Murray, White & Brown, Dorion has 3 stud prospects coming & numerous lesser lights but solid players that have some form of NHL future.

        Are they a cup contender as constructed? I don’t perceive so but anything can happen, Carolina won a cup in 06 I didn’t see that happening. Are they a playoff team this year? The injury’s concern me, the younger D to some extent as well. They will be in the hunt but not certain I have them doing so as I write this.

        Someone has to fall out for TB to make it & I would be shocked if they miss again this year. Is that Ottawa? I have no idea really, all I know is that the points that separate who does or doesn’t isn’t getting tighter & tighter. Parity is alive & well & the new lottery rules should stop any team from tanking it like we have seen in the past. TB & NYI both missed the playoffs by 1/2 a point last season.

        I have 6 teams, possible 7 battling it out for 2 spots & the difference in points may come down to just 4 to 6 from making it & finishing 13th in the East. That’s tough.

      • Shero drafted all of them, well Randy Sexton did. He’s the one that put the priority on late round picks being kids that were going to college. It gives them extra time to develop before they go pro and obviously people who go to college have a decent amount of intelligence. Rust, Archibald, Blueger etc all benefited from that route. Sexton just made really great picks. The Jordan Staal trade helped a lot too. Getting Dumoulin, Pouliot and Sutter who was traded for Bonino and the pick that became Gustavson and Clendening who was part of the trade for Hagelen. That one trade really helped win 2 cups. It’s crazy how much luck is involved on top of knowing what type of player you want.

      • ok

        In the case of Pittsburgh of coarse you trade your picks for established nhl talent. Your are actually realistic going to try and win the cup. Not just have a stab at the playoffs or hope to get lucky.

        In the case of a team like Toronto. You bottom out. Draft high and build through the draft. Once you actually become a good team then you trade your picks. Perhaps the Leafs are there now.

        So in conclusion, you build through the draft when needed. You then use your draft picks as assets once you have quality team built through the draft.

        Sometimes it doesn’t work out like Edmonton and you have to continue to do it through the draft till you actually turn the corner. Sometimes you think your their and start trading to soon and end up being a perennial bubble team. Often you mess it up and get stuck wonder what direction to go or good players leave you or the pressure to succeed pushes you to rush the project resulting in another taking the helm and rushing it.

        Patience is key

    • I’m a Leaf fan, the rebuild has to start with the right Management. Trevor Linden is not the right person to be steering their ship. He may be a good PR man, but nothing more than that.

    • Lou made the sensible signings, not Shanny, and Lou was simply lucky to get the #1 pick. Would the Leafs be “turned around” with a few #5 picks?

  2. Rutherford is a bit of a dinosaur.
    Game #10 mark will see some adjustments throughout the league.
    Not sure why Leafs would not be interested in one of the VGK dozen defensemen . Polak would not make that team

    • He wouldn’t make the Senators either where they too have a log-jam on D with Karlsson, Oduya, Phaneuf, Ceci, Claeson, Borowiecki and Wideman, with Chabot, Harpur and Jaros each knocking at\ the door. Something’s gotta give there.

    • Toronto will sign Polak but not until after the roster is sorted out. That comes on Oct 4th. All teams are required to submit their 23 man roster on Oct 3rd the day before the season starts. To get the maximum LTIR allowed injured players need to be put on LTIR on opening day, Oct 4th if sooner the savings declines, Tor can’t afford all possible LTIR space.

      That means Horton & Lupul eat up 2 of those 23 man roster spots until opening day. Once they are placed on LTIR Polak will be signed.

      Polak is solid 5/6 3rd pairing option on D, he kills penalties on Tor’s #1 PK unit, & plays a fairly sound defensive game with in his abilities, he is also extremely physical & blocks shots, 6th for hits in the NHL at & tied for 47th in blocked shots last year at D seeing 75 games.

      He will team up with some combination of Carrick, Marincin or a player acquired in trade forming the 3rd pairing in Tor.

      I was surprised he wasn’t signed already by someone but obviously wants to play in Tor & who can blame him, great times in Tor. He won’t be the next UFA signed now as he appears set to play in Tor & that has to wait until Oct 4th to be signed due to business reasons.

  3. Boston Bruins have stock piled a lot of young blue liners but can’t see them making a deal with the Leafs. Sooner or later the Bruins will have to move one or two they just can’t accommodate all of them. Toronto and Colorado are both in desperate need I guess time will tell.

    • The way Boston’s D contracts are structured & the amount of time it takes the vast majority of Dman to get to the NHL & develop they may not.

      That said it makes sense to potentially move a prospect Dman eventually as they have stock piled what appears to be 4 future NHL Dman, solid D prospects in Lindgren, Zboril, Lauzon & Vaakanainen.

      It’s still a long way to waiver eligibility. Zboril & Lauzon both drafted in 2015 still have 3 years or 160 games to go to have to clear waivers & buy that time Chara, McQuad, Miller & potentially even Krug could be gone, all are UFA’s in that timeline.

      • It’s a nice luxury to have. McKeens just graded Bostons prospects as the 2nd best in the NHL in this years yearbook. I little over zealous for me, the Hockey News Future watch published in February 2017 had them 10th so not picking up this years draft picks as yet.

      • Ya, I think it is a little early to think about moving any of them, from an outsiders perspective any way. There are no guarantees that all of these guys develop into good NHL D- Men. A year in Providence for Zboril and Lauzon will add clarity on their futures, but I can see Lauzon spending 2 full years their just because of how he plays. Takes risks.
        As always it depends on what you are getting back.

      • My point as well Raybark. I assume those 4 & potentially a few more Bruins D prospects have some form of NHL future but hard to tell what that future is today.

        The development path for young Dman is long for most, Skjei is a great example of a path followed by the vast majority of Dman into the NHL. Years in college or the minors, if college followed by years in the minors, a cup of coffee ,then they start being deployed in a sheltered role earning opportunities as their abilities warrant.

        Schmaltz in StL has a great future drafted 3 picks ahead of Skjei in 2012. this will be his 1st NHL season seeing a 3rd pairing sheltered minutes role. How quickly his role opens up will depend much on him. Cleasson in Ottawa, 4 full years in the minors.

        Most Dman drafted wait 5 years to see a regular sheltered shift in the NHL so these Boston D prospects are buried for years potentially. The business side of hockey comes into play unless simply to good to hold back but those Dman are in the minority the few exceptions to the rule.

        1 of my favorite sayings I heard by radio DJ JJ Richards was. “There is always room at the top.”

    • I don’t think the Leafs are in desperate need but they do have surplus decent forwards that won’t make this year’s team. I see them making moves closer to the deadline. A proven back-up goaltender would help right now though.

      • Agreed. From a business perspective, cap issues, waiver eligibility, etc. Tor doesn’t really have to do anything. Nor stands to lose a good player on waivers.

        Capfriendly currently shows them with 17 forwards, waive Fehr & Smith, that leaves them with a 23 man roster, on opening day place Horton & Lupul on LTIR, sign Polak & promote/trade another D to get to the conventional 13F, 8D, 2G, 23 man roster format.

        The issue is then who sits? Lievo obviously but is Brown playing 4th line RW? Marleau has been playing LW with Kadri pushing Komarov from LW last season to RW this season.

        If the lines are.

        Hyman, Matthews, Nylander.
        JvR, Bozak, Marner.
        Marleau, Kadri, Komarov.
        Martin, Moore, Brown.
        Spare. Lievo.

        That’s a nice luxury to have but a terrible waste of Lievo’s & Brown’s skill sets. Simply not enough minutes to go round for all that talent & Kapanen & Shoshnikov get buried in the minors.

        Move some young forwards & a pick or picks to get a decent Dman. Easier said than done but you would think they could find someone to trade with.

  4. I figure that the Leafs are after Lindholm, but that’s guy that the Ducks would highly covet. It looks like the Ducks and Leafs could make a deal for Vatanen as the Ducks could use some help up front and headed to a log jam on defense, while Toronto needs a top 4 minute playing DMan. Judging from the history of trades between these two teams it wouldn’t be a surprise if the deal was already done, and simply waiting for Vatanen to return and show he’s in good health.

  5. What about JVR and Nylander for Hampus Lindholm?

    Since it seems like the Leafs are going to let JVR play out the season, it’s almost the same as Nylander for Lindholm…except the Ducks would place value on having JVR this year because of the age of Getzlaf and Perry. Lindholm gives the Leafs a top pairing horse.

    —-

    The Pens seem to have found their 3rd line center…for 2018-2019. Adam Johnson is the real deal, he just needs to add weight and strength. I’d rank him as their second best prospect behind Sprong, which says a lot about Johnson given Aston-Reese is also in the system.

    With that in mind, I hope they don’t get a guy like Riley Sheahan. Go get a one year option like Bozak.

    • I don’t think they’d move Lindholm for anything short of Matthews.

  6. How wonderful! Leafs fans can now talk about the Leafs! Because there is an article about the Leafs. So if anybody mentions their team out of hand we can accuse them of being biased. This makes my day!

  7. Off topic.

    What’s up with Lupuls 180?
    Why all of the sudden is he apologizing and not seeking a 2nd opinion?

    Maybe he fractured his wrist typing that tweet?

    I kid, I kid! ….. but he really is a little fragile.

    • I think tie domi showed up at his house and threatened to squirt him with a water bottle.

      • It is something like that. This is an old boys network, people & players do get blackballed. Not superstars but Ted Nolan undermining John Muckler cost him greatly.

        Perhaps he’s being promised a position in the organization like Robidas was once his contract expires.

      • Isn’t the league obligated to investigate at this point? When cap circumventing contracts got too absurd, the league snapped back pretty hard. Are we due for that again?

    • I was thinking the exact same thing Nyr4life.
      It is standard nowadays for anyone to seek a second opinion when having any serious diagnosis of any kind. It is even recommended.

      I got a little irritated when I heard that this story was now “remedied” all of a sudden by NHL network. We now have an apologetic and passive Lupul. Probably because a second opinion might cost the Leafs some draft picks. It just doesn’t jibe.

      Controlling people, or forcing them against their will, never rests easy with me.

      • Do we have any proof of that ? Doesn’t pass the smell test for me either .. but it’s a tough situation to know what’s going on exactly .. is the league also done with the situation ? As a lot of people say the worst kept secret in the NHL , Lou can’t be happy with the spotlight . what do the leaf fans think ?? Lyle ??

      • As a Leafs fan this is clearly a matter of Lupul trying to express his discomfort with how his career is being destroyed and the Leafs crushing him for trying.
        This is straight up a massive corporation dwarfing an athlete.
        It all makes me really uneasy.

        Some points that come to mind:
        1. How will UFAs react to this? Can they trust Toronto management?
        2. Should Lupul care? He’s making a killing and living life while the normal human being toils in front of their computer screens 8-10 hours a day.
        3. Why go for three years of Marleau instead of a year of Lupul?

      • Lupul saga: We have no idea if he would a physical or even would want to pass a physical. None of us do.
        It is up to the Leafs if they want him in there lineup, or maybe even in there room even if he was healthy.
        So if he was, hello Marlies. Does he want that? Would any team pick him up on waivers? I doubt it. If he plays fantastic will someone pick him up? Maybe, but I’m skeptical.
        Maybe he just got frustrated and typed something he now regrets.

      • Keep in mind that they can’t just bury his salary in the AHL anymore. The NHL is very slow at stopping the cap cheating, but they may be embarrassed enough to take action. They should.

      • Ray bark,

        Cmon now. Did what he initially say not sound like a guy calling out the Leafs organization for what they’re doing?

        You’re right, we didn’t know, but he enlightened us all…. until he changed his mind.

        Why the NHL is turning their heads is beyond me. Why the small market … or big market teams aren’t crying foul is beyond me.

        Let’s either eliminate the cap, or play by the rules. Not some have to play by the rules, and others get a blind mulligan.

      • NYR4Life – it isn’t quite cap circumventing since Lupul’s salary wasn’t on LTIR last year. Leafs only get salary relief if they require the extra cap room. As it stands the Leafs get nothing for placing him there, nor can they.
        The only flexibility they need is achieved by placing Horton there

      • They used it on Lupul last year. I’m sure they use it again this year.

      • Did the Leafs take advantage of the extra cap space last year by having Lupul not play?
        I read that they did not.
        Tough to cry foul when they gained absolutely nothing from it.
        Will they this year? We will see.
        The way I look at it even if he was healthy he isn’t playing in the NHL for the Leafs. Does he want to play and the AHL for a year and work his way back?
        He isn’t a real trade candidate.
        I have no idea what Lupul is like, but the harsh words and the back tracking?
        No second opinion or grievance filed by the NHLPA?
        Whatever is going on, it makes no sense to me.

      • That’s the problem though….he probably doesn’t want to play in the AHL. The Leafs certainly don’t want him to play in the AHL. The NHLPA isn’t going to do anything on it’s own. The NHL will probably just turn a blind eye, but everyone knows it’s blatant cheating.

      • If they have a healthy player, that they are putting on LTIR, it’s circumventing the cap. Regardless of if they use it or not.

        Honestly don’t remember the leafs cap situation last year, but they did trade for Boyle etc. Did Lupul help?

      • Guys, I agree, this is strange. The article I read on Sportsnet.ca, said that the Leafs did not take advantage of it, and yes it does matter. If they did not use the extra space they did not circumvent. How did it help them?
        Lupul has the option to get a 2nd opinion. He did not. He also did not file a grievance, which is his right. If he wanted to play why didn’t he. If the Leafs wanted to cheat, how come they didn’t.
        Sorry boys but if I had to guess (and we all are) I smell BS on the Lupul side. There is no logic to what he is doing.

      • It seems fairly obvious to me. He wants to play in the NHL, and he also wants $5.25m. The Leafs are saying shut up, stay home, and take the $. If he doesn’t, he’s going to cause a ton of trouble for himself and the Leafs.

  8. Leafs defense is in serious dis -a – ray…

    Maranicin is a “bust”

    Trading for a top 4 defenseman is very costly, but these stop gap, fill the hole, temporary fix is not the solution either.

    Leafs can contend, but not with this defense.

    • It’s not brutal & finding solid solutions is astronomically expensive. Tor is trying they just haven’t been willing to pay the price yet required to do so.

      I have Polak being signed Oct 4th.

      Reilly, Hainsey.
      Gardener, Zaitsev.
      Polak, Carrick.
      Marincin, ?

      It’s a stop gap with Hainsey & Polak till a solution can be found or existing D prospects can be developed & ready to step into the NHL.

      • Toronto has a great offence . I agree with earlier post though about being a nice problem to have but good young ready NHL players most likely will be in the ahl , questionable with the d as is . Hainsey / Reilly are a disaster waiting to happen , forcing gardiner / zaitsev to face top competion . And polak coming off injury at his age paired with possibly Carrick . For this season , as is , it’s a disaster waiting to happen IMO . Like last year the d will be the weak link that brings them down .

      • At some point one of the young guys have to be brought up. I’d love to see Dermott or neilson getting a call up

      • I’m not sure this season that helps or improves the roster .. possibly Dermott in 5/6 role ..

      • If not brutal, it’s pretty close based on that return game in TO the other night where, essentially, the Belleville Senators skated rings around Hainsey and Marincin and their shooters were stymied by a back-up goalie (2 goals) and one ticketed to the ECHL (Hogberg – 0 goals). It’s got to be giving them SOME cause for concern because that D – or the system employed – looked pretty woeful.

      • That defense is terrible no matter how you look at it, when you have Reilly and hainsey as your top pair your in for a long season

      • Expecting Hainsey to play top pairing minutes for 82 games at 36 is not what the Leafs had in mind with his signing. He just won a Cup and he can step up when needed. Reilly, Gardener, and Zaitsev are the core here. Hainsey splitting time between 2nd and 3rd pairings is ideal. An injury to Reilly or Zaitsev ….

      • Ds
        Ideal for what exactly ?

      • And who fills out the top 4 ? Let me guess the “steal of the draft” (before a single game played) Timothy lilegren ?? Otherwise known in leaf nation as karlsson jr ?

      • Craig if the steal of the draft is playing this yr it really shows how bad the leafs d is, the kid is not near ready for the NHL

      • Heavy sarcasm big bad . I don’t doubt his skill or potential , not ready to compare him to karlsson as I’ve heard bandied about and I don’t think he has a chance to play any substantial or meaningful time in the NHL this season .

      • Lilegren isn’t even close to a Chabot comparison, never mind Karlsson!

    • It seems like Dermott is more and more likely to earn a spot on the opening night roster. That’s probably the best option for the Leafs. Stop talking about being cup contenders because you arnt yet. Keep playing the young guys and getting them experience and you will be soon enough.

  9. As discussed yesterday. Meloche cut by Colorado to the AHL today. Not near NHL ready.

    • Yeah, they are trying to develop Meloche properly. I didn’t think he should start this season. He may come in later, but he is progressing nicely every year and looked good in camp. He is pretty close. But the woeful Avs don’t need anyone to help this team earn a middling first rounder. They have somewhat of a pass because nobody cares about em’ anyway. Not even the owners. Come on Dahlin!

  10. leafs are weak: physically, defensively and PK

    Rosen & Polk get to share 6th & extra roster spots. Next call up is Dermott.

    Leafs could use a Backup Goalie if McEinhey falters.

    Leafs have assets to trade for a # 1-2 Dman
    – Two 2018 1st round draft picks (leafs/pit)
    – trade reilly / gardiner / zaitsev, if needed
    – trade JVR
    – 28 or so draft picks + bozak / komorav…
    – 3-5 good prospects +

    Personally if not washed up & available I’d sign Chara as a FA in 2018 for the experience, size, strength as a 6th Dman and spot duty

    • It’s tough to find a taker for a quantity of good assets for a legit #1-2. If they really want to land one, it’s going to cost a true premium asset. If they don’t regress this year, late firsts just don’t have the value.

      • true…but combined assets theyre sitting pretty if a dman comes up