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The Countdown: 5 trade targets the Maple Leafs should be tracking

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Photo credit:David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Seney
1 month ago
The Toronto Maple Leafs are a fragile group at the moment. The team is 4-4-2 in their last 10 games and have made their way back out west to start a four-game road trip.
There’s been a lot of noise surrounding head coach Sheldon Keefe and all his creative tinkering with the lineup, however, the attention should also be on GM Brad Treliving, as it’s less than two months until the trade deadline. The veteran executive has yet to add anyone via trade this season, and perhaps it’s time to get ahead of the market.
This week’s Countdown dives into five trade targets the Maple Leafs should be tracking, in no particular order:

Chris Tanev, Calgary Flames

From a fit perspective, it’s too perfect not to consider. Tanev is all defense, all the time, and is the type of teammate you want on your side come Stanley Cup Playoff time. He loves to block shots, gets in proper positioning, and has the willingness and commitment to do whatever he can to help the team win. Don’t the Maple Leafs need more of this?
Tanev is a pending free agent, owed $4.5 million, and has been linked to the Maple Leafs, essentially since Treliving took over and admitted he’d like to upgrade his blue line. Tanev’s a Toronto native and while he holds a 10-team modified no-trade clause, being a Maple Leafs very likely makes the list. There are two big factors here to consider. Maybe three.
The Flames are still in the mix in the Western Conference and I wouldn’t expect GM Craig Conroy to move out every single pending free agent if the team is in a playoff spot in a month or so. Tanev’s $4.5 million won’t necessarily be an easy add for Treliving to navigate as the Leafs are currently projected to have $34,999 in deadline cap space. And three, Toronto doesn’t own a second-round pick for the next three drafts, which would likely get a trade done and appease Conroy. Perhaps the two teams make a bigger deal before March 8?

Sean Monahan, Montreal Canadiens

With Pontus Holmberg playing the wing and with John Tavares currently going through a very tough stretch, Treliving may want to consider adding a veteran centre, who is also versatile enough to seamlessly move to the wing. Monahan could get the job done.
The Canadiens forward is having a strong season on a bad team and continues to make a ton of sense for the Maple Leafs. Treliving and him go way back from their Calgary days and familiarity is a huge player in the NHL. There’s also Monahan’s contract to consider as he’s only making $1.98 million, a figure the Maple Leafs could be able to work around.
The Brampton, ON native has posted 25 points in 43 games and has won 58% of his faceoffs. He plays on the power play, he kills penalties, Monahan would be a great fit for the Maple Leafs and give them some veteran depth up front they could desperately use. 21 points in 30 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, big games shouldn’t scare Monahan.

Mario Ferraro, San Jose Sharks

Like Tanev, Ferraro is a stay-at-home blueliner who loves to block shots and is very good at it. The King City, ON native is still young at 25 and could be a nice addition to the Maple Leafs’ second pair and someone who can help kill penalties efficiently.
Ferraro’s put up 14 points in 44 games, and maybe there’s potential there for more offensive production, but you’re adding the Sharks defenseman to sure up some defensive holes. Mark Giordano has been hit-or-miss all season long and Conor Timmins is basically unplayable right now. The Maple Leafs’ blue line is a mess and Treliving needs to address it in a hurry. Ferraro does that in spades. He’s signed for two more seasons at a very reasonable $3.25 million AAV and while the Sharks are expected to be sellers ahead of March 8, acquiring Ferraro may cost a pretty penny.
If Treliving ends up being open to moving his 2024 first-round pick, would a deal to acquire Ferraro for 2.5 seasons make sense? What if the Sharks add in Anthony Duclair and retain salary on both?

Nick Seeler, Philadelphia Flyers

Seeler is tough as nails and will be tough for Flyers GM Daniel Briere to move, as Philly is surprising everybody with their success this season. They currently sit second in the Metropolitan division with 54 points, four more than the Maple Leafs.
Seeler would fit in perfectly on the Maple Leafs blue line and is the type of player Treliving drools over. 6-foot-3, skates well, is physical, isn’t afraid to sacrifice his body, and at just $775,000 against the cap, maybe Briere considers selling high here? Obviously, the Maple Leafs can’t be overpaying for a depth defenseman with only seven assists in 44 games, but if the price is right, Treliving should be interested. Seeler would be a nice upgrade over Timmins and William Lagesson and currently leads the Flyers with a +14 rating.

Matt Dumba, Arizona Coyotes

The Maple Leafs need to upgrade on the right side and Dumba should be someone Treliving is considering. He’s a pending free agent on a bubble team in Arizona and if they end up selling off some free agents, the Maple Leafs should be making a call to gauge the asking price.
At $3.9 million AAV, there will need to be some salary retention involved, but that’s likely going to be the case in any Maple Leafs deadline deal. Dumba is a veteran, he does all the little things to help the team win and he would be a great addition to the right side of Toronto’s second pair.
Dumba’s recorded five points, 77 hits, and 56 blocked shots in 40 games this season, and he has 49 games of Stanley Cup Playoff experience under his belt. At 29 years old and with the potential fit for both sides, he could be the type of rental Treliving acquires and then re-signs this upcoming offseason. Dumba’s been linked to the Maple Leafs for a long time, perhaps this is finally the year it happens.

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