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[Leafs Links] Filling The Doughnut?

Credible sources are now saying that the Leafs are keenly interested in acquiring help up front.

Claus Andersen

We've been critical in the recent past of Darren Dreger for being a Dave Nonis mouthpiece on Twitter (particularly with regards to contract negotiations), but when Dreger says the Leafs are looking for someone, there is hardly a more credible source to be found. The critical question is what type of player the Leafs are going to look for.

With Dave Bolland being out of action for a matter of months and his contract set to expire at the end of the season, you might think the Leafs would chase a player similar to him in terms of age, ability, and cost, but there is no telling which players are available or if that's even in their heads. Odds are, Nonis will be faced with an apples vs. oranges situation, where his two best options involve a couple different types of players for different prices. Heck knows, Dreger said "help up front" - could they conceivably trade for a winger? You'd like to think that's too illogical to be true, but when a guy like Dreger starts making statements like that, you can bet his wording is well-considered.

Several of the Leafs' offensively-gifted defenders probably don't like the look of this situation. Cody Franson is a very tradeable asset, but because he isn't signed through next season, his value is limited. Jake Gardiner might fetch a decent player in return, but in order to get a real impact player, the Leafs are likely looking at some kind of package deal. Plus, since the Leafs are right up against the cap, they'll need to shed some salary if they acquire an established forward.

In the meantime, we'll see how James van Riemsdyk does at center, I guess.

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