After a whole lot of Kerfoot, Johnsson, and Kapanen talk over the past month, Tyson Barrie has swooped in and become the belle of the trade deadline ball for the Leafs. After two consecutive playoff runs that saw the Leafs out after the first round only to have unrestricted free agents like James van Riemsdyk and Jake Gardiner walk for nothing, the Leafs seem to be employing a bit more of an asset management strategy with Tyson Barrie this year.
More Trade Bait talk on @SportsCentre– I believe at least 4 teams have shown interest so far in #Leafs pending UFA Tyson Barrie: #Canucks , #Flames , #VegasBorn , #LetsGoCanes. Only way Barrie gets dealt is if TOR finds better fit on D, or gets pieces to flip for that better fit.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) February 21, 2020
The full clip of what Frank had to say can be found here. But we’ll break down some of the suspected trades below
One for One, Tyson Barrie for T.J. Brodie
This is obviously the most straight forward, and if there is the potential to get Brodie signed to a reasonable contract in Toronto for a few years, it’s certainly worth exploring. Brodie has always played the right side, to compliment Giordano, but has a left shot. He brings a similar skillset to Barrie, but has better numbers, quite possibly from playing with Giordano. The trade is a bit of a head scratcher from a Flames perspective, as they know Brodie is a fit with their team, and unless they see Barrie a true upgrade or part of their long term plans, they’d probably be better off staying with the D they know.
Golden Knights pursuing Barrie so they can sign him long term
The cleared cap space of Cody Eakin means the Golden Knights can straight up add Barrie without Toronto needing to take salary back. The Knights look to be loading up and would probably be looking to dump some futures on the Leafs, which isn’t a bad thing at all. And if their intention is to go long term with Barrie, perhaps a conditional pick based on Barrie re-signing could add some additional value to the deal.
Carolina looking at Barrie as a rental
Carolina is another interesting trade option, and on Thursday we explored some of the idea of Jake Gardiner being part of a potential return for Barrie. That was not well received by a lot of you, but the idea of the Leafs getting back their 1st round pick, and an asset could hold more appeal.
Previously mentioned Canucks interest
The Canucks are without their first two picks in this years draft, and it’s questionable they have the assets to get a deal done with Toronto that meets the needs of the Leafs. Toronto is rumoured to be interested in Troy Stecher, but at best that’s part of the return or an secondary deal to consider. Though perhaps some of their prospects I wouldn’t think are available, might actually be on the block.
Leafs are trying to do something creative but not sure deal gets done.
— J (@Account4hockey) February 21, 2020
That is part of a large quote from Chris Johnston, but has me thinking the Leafs might seriously be looking at PK Subban. If Toronto is able to clear Barrie’s contract, open up a bit more salary space, and pick up some futures in the process, the Leafs would be in a prime position to take a run at PK Subban (with some salary definitely retained). Subban definitely isn’t the player he was a couple of years ago, but he also isn’t likely a player that would cost the Leafs a lot.
There is also some hope that Dubas has something even more significant up his sleeves, but I’ll hold myself back from getting too carried away with speculation. At this point we’re in the final 72 hours of crazed rumours and we can hopefully transition to seeing some actual trades instead.