More Maple Leafs on way out?
The Leafs’ dressing room was still buzzing Thursday after the trade of Francois Beauchemin a day earlier, and if GM Brian Burke has his way, the defenseman won’t be the only player to make an exit.
Veteran puck-moving blueliner Tomas Kaberle is set to become an unrestricted free agent July 1 and he’s used to hearing his name out there at this time of year.
“You’re right, about the last few years, you listen to the same stuff all the time,” Kaberle told ESPN.com after the team’s morning skate at Air Canada Centre. “It’s not a thing that a player wants to hear. He just wants to concentrate on hockey. But obviously it’s happening [around the trade deadline], the media analyzes it more and more. I just have to focus on hockey.”
Kaberle controls his fate with his no-trade clause. Boston, Montreal and the New York Rangers are among several teams I believe are interested in him. Eventually, the Leafs will go to Kaberle with a trade offer and he’ll need to say yes or no. He fully knows that.
“If it happens, it happens,” said Kaberle, who has been with the Leafs for his entire career. “That’s the NHL. It’s going to happen or not. I’m up to it, whatever happens, happens. It’s something every player has to go through at the deadline.”
Kris Versteeg wonders about his future, as well. The Leafs are definitely talking to other teams about him.