Toronto Maple Leafs
The Maple Leafs have done a darn good job of stockpiling skilled forwards. Their future could be ridiculous with William Nylander, Mitch Marner, Kasperi Kapanen, and Jeremy Bracco leading the way. When you look at the prospect depth, they lack high-end prospects at left wing. Drouin would change that. If the Leafs could get Drouin without giving up Nylander or Marner, their future could be even brighter.
Kapanen could be involved in the trade. Kapanen for Jonathan Drouin would be a fairly even swap. The Leafs would be giving up a guy who’s more raw and inexperienced for a guy who’s just 16 months older than Kapanen and has shown that he can perform in the NHL. Granted, Kapanen’s ceiling is likely higher than Jonathan Drouin’s. But Jonathan Drouin is certainly not a bum. The Leafs could make that trade and still be building for the future. The Leafs could also sell high on Leo Komarov. There would have to be more parts involved, but it’s a start.
The Leafs will likely get even more draft picks at the 2016 trade deadline, so draft picks won’t be an issue. They also have an extra first rounder (the Penguins) in either 2016 or 2017, depending on if the Penguins make the playoffs this season. That could be the ace of Toronto’s sleeve.
Would the Lightning trade with a division rival who already has unfair prospect depth? Who knows. But the Leafs could sure tempt them quite a bit and the reward far outweighs the risk for the Leafs.
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