The Toronto Maple Leafs are reportedly interested in free agent Tobias Rieder, but how far should they pursue this interest?
As reported by Rick Dhaliwal of Sportsnet 650, the Leafs are also interested in Tobias Rieder. While nowhere near as intriguing as Tavares, he has still apparently gained the attention of teams such as the Canucks, Flames, Oilers and Canadiens.
The Los Angeles Kings decided against giving Rieder a qualifying offer. As such, he will officially become an unrestricted free agent on July 1.
The question is, how seriously should the Leafs look into pursuing the 25-year-old? In part, it could be determined by what position they see him adding depth to.
More from Toronto Maple Leafs
- Maple Leafs Rumours: Half of NHL teams interested in Ilya Mikheyev
- Toronto Maple Leafs: How to address the goaltender position
- Leafs reward Timothy Liljegren with extension after breakout season
- Maple Leafs: Jack Campbell situation becoming increasingly uncertain
- Jason Spezza retires, joins Toronto Maple Leafs front office
Depending on where you look, Rieder can essentially play in any forward position. He has been listed as a left winger, right winger and centre, which in itself could make him more appealing as a versatile option to provide depth.
So, apart from versatility, what does the Landshut, German native offer, which would persuade the Leafs to make a concentrated effort to sign him? A review of his scouting report provides some insight.
Rieder is described as having natural scoring instincts and good hockey sense. He also has good hands and is very creative with the puck.
On the negative side, the 2011 114th overall draft pick does not have ideal size or strength. On a related note, he is also criticized for his lack of grit.
Overall though, Rieder is considered talented and with some upside. He is decent on the penalty kill and he rarely misses any games.
But again, is this enough for Reider to represent an upgrade for the Leafs? At least one player you can imagine the former Arizona Coyote replacing, is Matt Martin.
Renowned for his toughness, Martin spent most of his time as a healthy scratch after Christmas. However, even this is not so straightforward, with Martin signed up for one more season, at a cap hit of $2.5 million.
The reality is the Leafs already have plenty of depth and versatility at the three forward positions. As such, the question remains as to if Rieder would provide more quality and an overall upgrade, even taking into account the likely departures of James van Riemsdyk and Leo Komarov?
Ultimately, this comes down to the former Oilers draft pick himself. You imagine he will want to put himself in the best possible position to play regularly, and as such, we do not see him coming to Southern Ontario.
What’s your take on Rieder? More to the point, do you consider it a good idea for the Toronto Maple Leafs to try to sign him? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.