Dustin Penner and the Maple Leafs trade rumour of the day

If Brian Burke is looking at a rental player to give the Maple Leafs an edge in their stretch drive, the club could take a chance with Los Angeles Kings forward Dustin Penner.

At 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, Penner is one of those big-body forwards that Burke covets and knows well from his days in Anaheim.

Moreover, a change of scenery might also ignite the 29-year-old Winkler, Man., native, who has struggled since the Kings acquired him a year ago in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers.

At the time, the trade was considered one of the big plays of the trade deadline.


Penner is in the final year of that contract and will earn $4.25 million this season. He’ll become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, so the Leafs don’t need to worry about him past that date if they have no interest in resigning him.

If the Kings need to dump his salary to facilitate other trades, then the Leafs may not have to give up one of their young prospects, just salary cap space. Taking a flyer on the winger isn’t much of a gamble and his size could produce some dividends in a