The NHL trade deadline for this season is April 12th, at 3:00 pm EDT specifically. That means it’s now only a week away. We know that the NHL worked out a deal with the Canadian government to cut the mandatory quarantine period from 14 days down to 7. So we may see the Leafs make a move today (if they didn’t already make one between me writing this on Monday and when it was actually published), but they may also wait as long as possible.
Why wait as long as possible? Because they’re a virtual lock to finish among the top of the division, and because they may be waiting to learn more about the health of their top two goalies in case they need to use their cap space and assets to trade for another one. That’s something Katya touched on yesterday.
Hoping that the Leafs don’t swing any trades until this comes out, someone sent me a website that we can have some fun with as fans.
That website is mcdavidforpicks.ca. It calculates the value of various players, prospects and draft picks. Then you can pick two teams and try to construct a trade that those value calculations come out as fair and equal. If you’re too lopsided for one team, it rejects it and tells you so.
This has no real bearing on reality, since we see some hilariously bad trades at times. But it can help you get a rough idea if your trade proposal is WAY out to lunch, and it will tell you how off you are — i.e., McDavid for picks. There are some limits — it doesn’t include a full list of a team’s prospects, or draft picks beyond the first two rounds.
So here are some of specific players connected to the Leafs from various insider reports and rumours. I’ll play around with the tool to see what a trade could look like:
ACCEPTED: Linus Ullmark for Michael Hutchinson, Mikko Kokkonen, and Toronto’s 2021 2nd round pick.
The accepted message didn’t say this was overwhelming, and I can see why. Hutchinson is a backup on a bad team, or a third stringer on a good team. Kokkonen is an okay prospect but he isn’t likely to be a top four-calibre guy, and the Leafs’ second round pick will be close to a third. For an established NHL starting goalie, who’s still pretty young? Even if he’s a rental, it gives the Leafs a chance to extend him beyond this year as Andersen’s replacement. That’s not bad.
The first thing I actually tried was just a straight swap with a first round pick, but the rejection message said it was close but I had to sweeten the pot. I could do the first round pick and Hutchinson, giving more quality instead of quantity. In my opinion, I’d rather give up a meh prospect and a worse pick so that’s what I went with.
ACCEPTED: Taylor Hall for Toronto’s 2021 2nd Round Pick
This... was actually the very first thing I tried to see how close the proposal was, before I tried other things to tack on. So that was pretty easy. You can replace the pick with some of the lesser prospects available in Toronto’s pool, according to the tool, and the trade still works. So guys like Abruzzese, Hallander, etc. I think I’ll stick with the pick, which feels a bit unfair for Buffalo but I’m not one to look a hypothetical gift horse in the mouth!
ACCEPTED: Mikael Granlund for Toronto’s 2021 2nd Round Pick and Nic Petan
At first it also accepted Granlund for just a 2nd round pick, but I mean if the 2nd round pick got it done for Taylor Hall it makes sense it would work for Granlund. I was really questioning the tool, so I tried switching the order of the teams around and running the same trade idea. Before I had Toronto on the left and Nashville on the right, but when I swapped them and presented the same idea the trade was rejected due to salary concerns.
I went back to the Hall trade and did the same thing. This time, it also rejected the deal with just a pick. But now it won’t allow me to even include Kerfoot because of the salary difference. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to allow for the possibility of salary retention within the deal, so the tool isn’t perfect. But including Petan in the deal made it work, so... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
Have some with it, and post your trade attempts in the comments!
ONTO THE LINKS
‘I’m not gonna lie about my life’: How Jack Campbell was saved on his way to the Maple Leafs | by Mirtle at The Athletic
The TLN Trade Bored: Seven Days until the deadline | by Jon Steitzer at TLN
Versatile Hyman proving his value to Maple Leafs | by Travis Yost
AROUND THE HOCKEY WORLD
31 Thoughts: The Podcast — Trade Deadline Talk | by Sportsnet
Have a great Tuesday everyone!