Toronto Maple Leafs: Will they do anything else at the trade deadline?

BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Toronto Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello attends the 2016 NHL Draft on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Toronto Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello attends the 2016 NHL Draft on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

It appears the Toronto Maple Leafs are not going to stand pat at the trade deadline with the addition of Tomas Plekanec, but do they have anything else planned?

It is rare to see a team trade with a longtime rival like the Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens did on Sunday. Adding Tomas Plekanec fulfilled a need for the Leafs down the middle, but is that all they have planned for the trade deadline?

Their most recent 4-3 win over the Boston Bruins certainly puts the team in a position where they feel good about their chances in the playoffs. It also shows what the team could try to add, although it all depends on what the prices are and who is available.

The other option worth considering is whether Toronto gets any calls for James van Riemsdyk, Tyler Bozak or Leo Komarov. While it is a possibility, it would be tough to expect the Leafs making a trade for one of their pending free agents a priority.

What has worked for the team so far this season is how their internal moves have provided solutions for injuries and other needs, which is what they are supposed to do. The bonus is that the emergence of Travis Dermott and Kasperi Kapanen as everyday NHL players makes the trade deadline wish list much smaller than other contending teams.

That depth was on full display against the Bruins when Mike Babcock decided to put Mitch Marner with William Nylander and Zach Hyman, which led to instant success.

Marner has been one of the Leafs’ top offensive players the past month and to see Nylander perform well without Auston Matthews was encouraging. The other benefit was seeing the Leafs’ other lines dictate the pace against the Bruins, which was a complete reversal of what happened in Boston a couple of weeks ago.

Kapenen continues to impress to the point where he should get bumped off the fourth line and maybe to the third line with Bozak and van Riemsdyk.

When it comes to the trade deadline, it is clear that the only position the Leafs will be looking to improve is on defence. Adding a capable top-four defenceman is the ideal pickup, but finding the right fit won’t be easy.

As Chris Johnston of Sportsnet writes, the Leafs have put themselves in a position to make a big move at the deadline. Seeing the price the Leafs paid to add Plekanec, you can be sure that trying to add a defenceman will be costly.

There have been the obvious rumours with Ryan McDonagh, which ramped up when it was reported the Leafs were not on his no-trade list. Then there was the report about Chris Tanev‘s being another option that the Leafs have considered.

Given what the New York Rangers received for Rick Nash from the Boston Bruins, the price to acquire McDonagh might be too steep for the Leafs. Expect the Rangers to ask for a first round pick and prospects like Timothy Liljegren, and maybe even Kapanen.

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Even though the Leafs might have a strong chance to go far in the playoffs, we argued that mortgaging the future is not worth it, even if McDonagh would be around for next season.

When it comes to Tanev, his injury history would probably drive the price down; plus, the Vancouver Canucks have not announced their intentions like the Rangers have. If the cost is reasonable — meaning not including Liljegren, Dermott or Kapanen in a deal — then the Leafs should consider it.

As far as trade chips that the Leafs will make available, expect Josh Leivo, Matt Martin and Connor Carrick to be the only roster players offered. If a team is looking for a goalie, Calvin Pickard could be a name worth pursuing given his experience.

The Leafs still own their first round pick as well as the San José Shark’s second and third round picks.

This trade deadline might be one of the more intriguing ones for the Leafs in recent memory, given their position and which players could still be floating around.

Next: Leafs solidify centre depth with trade for Tomas Plekanec

What do you think the Leafs will do on trade deadline day? Should they make a big splash, make a minor deal or stand pat? Let us know in the comments.