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TLN Monday Mailbag: July 3rd

Feels good to be the richest team in the league and have something to show for it, doesn’t it? The Leafs aren’t taking their window of cost efficiency lightly, and it shows, even if they aren’t exactly plucking steals out of the market.

We’re excited, and so are you. But there are still thoughts on everybody’s mind, so let’s reach into the mailbag and see if we can make some sense of some of them.

I think now is the time to begin looking upwards towards the top of the league. I don’t know if this is a Presidents Trophy winning, cup-favourite being team just yet, but they were already due to take a step over next year and made some necessary improvements and added yet another Top-6 forward. It’s hard to bet against a team on the rise with the depth to match. For now, let’s look at winning the Atlantic Division as the aspiration.

I think as far as free agent signings go, they’re done. Unless somebody’s price really falls on the defensive side of things and they have no luck getting a better player in the trade market, there aren’t too many players left that can physically keep up with this roster and contribute.

What I could see happening is a quantity-for-quality trade at some point, but I think it’ll be a while until that happens.

You’d think that a theoretical JVR trade would be netting you that last defensive piece, wouldn’t it? I’m not certain it happens, mostly because I feel it would’ve been done by now if that were the case, but there isn’t really a need to move Van Riemsdyk right now unless the return massively helps the team. Sure, you could sell him for futures to avoid losing him for nothing in July, but if you consider keeping him to be a full season rental at the price of whatever they’d get back in return, without making a competitor/rival better, you’re probably coming out ahead standing pat.

I think Connor Brown gives it up; it doesn’t seem to be a number that he’s absolutely in love with or attached to. After all, between all the camps and number changes, Brown has worn 78, 61, 28, 16, and 12 with the Leafs already, and 29 with the Marlies.

I feel bad for him, but I also don’t think he cares.