The Toronto Maple Leafs Dilemma
Inspired by TSN’s Darren Dreger’s NHL: Insider, I have written this article to provoke discussion between hockey and Maple Leaf fans alike. Over the past years Mats Sundin has not had a proper winger to play aside him, the last proficient winger to be beside Mats was Alexander Mogilney. What can the organization do…..Inspired by TSN’s Darren Dreger’s NHL: Insider, I have written this article to provoke discussion between hockey and Maple Leaf fans alike. Over the past years Mats Sundin has not had a proper winger to play aside him, the last proficient winger to be beside Mats was Alexander Mogilney. As much as I like and enjoy watching Nik Antropov play, I am not a fan of the idea of him and Mats playing together. I would much rather see him centering the third or fourth line with Poni.
It is time for Leafs management to find a suitable companion to play along Mats. I know Jeff O’Neil was brought in last year to be this man, but, unfortunately he has not produced the way leafs management and fans would like. I am one for second chances and I believe O’Neil is a good fit for the Leafs, but along side a player like Peca.
Alexander Steen is another player that Leaf management are considering as an option to play along Mats. I do not enjoy the idea of this option. Do not get me wrong, Steen is the future face of the Leafs, but he still has to grow as a player and I believe he would be better suited with younger players as well to allow him to mature more as a player.
There are many rumors swirling around the leafs and un-restricted free agent Anson Carter. I do not believe Carter is the answer to the leafs woes. Carter is a talented player, but unfortunately he is a second or third line player and not the first line player that many picture him to be. In his last four years before last season with the Canuck’s he had a combined 33 points in 88 games. These are not numbers of a first line player.
I have come up with several options, I believe would benefit the leafs and other teams involved. Now I know people will have problems with these options but, that is the point of discussion.
Leave everything the way it is. Meaning do not sign Anson Carter. Try out several players with Mats throughout the season and see who is the best fit. (Keeps money around for any season acquisitions the leafs may want)
Sign Anson Carter. Try him with Mats and see if he is what they want him to be. (Gives the organization a strong playmaking forward, and a player who will play hard because it is for his hometown)
To Toronto: Marek Svatos
To Colorado: Pavel Kubina and a 2nd Round Draft Pick
Why?: This gives the Leafs a young talented scoring threat to play along side Mats. If you don’t think he is a scoring threat, just look at his stats from last year (his second in the NHL) 32 Goals, 18 Assists for a total of 50 Points. Svatos is in contract disputes with Colorado right now and he has been heard saying he will sit out the season if there is no deal, or a deal that fits his approval. The Ave’s are strong on the blue line now but Kubina adds that much more experience and depth.
To Toronto: Brenden Morrow and Stephane Robidas
To Dallas: Chad Kilger, Alex Ponikarovsky, Staffan Kronwall and a 4th Round Draft Pick
Why?: This gives the Leafs a solid forward to play along with Mats in Morrow. He has a combined 236 Points in 387 games over the last five seasons. Robidas strengthens the Leafs defense and comes at a bargain price. Morrow will be an un-restricted free agent next year and will most likely test the market, this is a good way for Dallas to get something for him now. Though Kilger won’t get the points that Morrow gets he is a good defensive replacement. So is Poni. Kronwall is a good defensive prospect and in a few years will be an amazing defenseman
To Toronto: Jason Blake
To NYI: Mikeal Tellqvist and Staffan Kronwall
Why?: This gives the leafs a goal scorer in Blake. The Islanders get a back-up to replace their new GM, Garth Snow. They also get a young defenseman, who in a couple of years will be a stellar defenseman.
Sign Eric Daze. A risky choice but the Leafs could get him at a bargain price, and try to see if he can prove to everyone he still has it.
Any Thoughts, Ideas…..