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From The Branches: The Floodgates Open

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Will they be the biggest deals of the deadline or just a sign of what’s to come?

NHL: Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs
Willy the best
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Last night the first two (relatively) big trades were swung, with Martin Hanzal being sent to Minnesota Wild for three picks and Ben Bishop weirdly being traded to the Los Angeles Kings to help clear up some cap space for the Bolts. As for the Kings perspective... I thought Quick was coming back pretty soon, but I guess they want some insurance for the playoffs?

For the Leafs, the good news is that the Florida Panthers lost last night (yay!). The bad news is that the Ottawa Senators beat them (boo!) and Boston won too (BOO!). That puts the Boston Bruins one point ahead of the Leafs for the third divisional playoff spot, though the Leafs still have a game in hand and hold the last wild card spot.

Onto the links!

Recap: Furies falter against the Inferno 3-1 | nafio, Annie and Gunnar all recap a pretty tense game, where the Furies fell short after keeping it close through two periods.

Toronto Maple Leafs trade rumours: Dealing with Detroit? | Seldo looks at the trade rumours surrounding two current Red Wings. Brigstew’s take: passz.

European report: Korshkov scored first | Katya tells us about the Leafs prospects playing over in Europe, now that the playoffs are nearing in some leagues and in full swing in others.

The Clarkson Trade, Two Years on by The Leafs Nation | Hard to believe it’s already been two years, and makes me wonder how different the team would be now if they hadn’t miraculously found a trade partner.

Toronto Marlies Week in Review: February 17-24 by Maple Leaf Hot Stove | The Marlies have been much better in recent weeks, despite missing so many key players to injury.

Auston Matthews ‘is going to be our No. 1 centre, if he isn’t already’ says Mike Babcock | The Athletic shares some quotes from Babs about everyone’s favourite deadpan quote.

Have a good Monday everyone!