Yesterday’s story was intended to be one of those water-cooler posts—you know, the kind that has no basis in fact, necessarily, but at least makes for fun conversation among fans when things are otherwise fairly quiet in the land of the Maple Leafs.
And in fact, that was the thrust of my post yesterday, that is, if you were in Leaf GM Dave Nonis’ shoes, would you even contemplate trading up to try and have a shot at one of the big names on the draft board this weekend?
We all know there are at least four names that seem to make scouts’ jaws drop, players who could be big-time difference makers for any team that drafts any one of them for years to come.
However, though that was the intent of the post, it was shuffled off to the bench because the Bernier deal hit just as I was posting the story, and my brief reference to the trade triggered plenty of interesting feedback and discussion on the deal—but not on my original question.
So I will ask you again (and maybe the question is even more timely in light of the Bernier trade. I mean, do we really need two number-one goaltenders in their mid-20s…how often do those marriages work out?): if you were in Nonis’ chair, a) would even consider trying to trade up? And b) if you would, what would you be prepared to offer to make it happen?
Are we talking Gardiner? Reimer and someone? Phaneuf? Is that enough? Not nearly enough?
Let’s put it another way: if it became clear that one of the top three or four teams would seriously entertain “offers”, are any Leafs untouchable, if you thought you could get your hands on one of the top three or four guys?
I’m guessing no one wants to part with Morgan Rielly, himself a player (were it not for a serious knee injury before he was drafted) that was almost a top-four guy himself a year ago—and a player some scouts feel may end up being the best defenseman in last year’s draft anyway.
But other than Reilly, if you could get, say, a MacKinnon (I can’t imagine why any team would even consider giving him up, but gain, for the sake of discussion), what would you be prepared to trade?
The lines are open….(and if you still want to bat around the Bernier deal, fee free…)