It’s been no secret over the last few weeks that the Leafs have the intention of moving Phil Kessel. But that intention seems to be getting more and more serious as we approach the draft – the talk of acquiring more picks, the amount of players they seem to like in this year’s class, and the whole “there’s going to be a lot of pain” quote from Mike Babcock and company.
In particular, there’s a widespread belief, as first reported a week ago by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, that the Leafs are making known their intent to deal Kessel before the draft, which could then trigger other moves.
Despite what most say, it shouldn’t be difficult to get a good return for Phil, as noted by Cox.
Kessel, meanwhile, has seven years to go at $8 million per, but even in an off, off season he potted 25 goals. There’s no obvious match here, but lots of teams failed in the playoffs or missed them because they struggled to score and could have interest in the winger.
Oh, and Kessel isn’t the only player the Leafs are looking to move.
Bozak and Lupul would be the next two on the list, and if Kessel can’t be moved, they are easier to deal. Lupul has three years left at $5.25 million, Bozak three more at $4.2 million.
It seems like the Leafs intend to trade everyone that can get them a return that helps the rebuild.
P.S. I Love You, Phil.