Report: Maple Leafs, Jake DeBrusk have mutual interest

Photo credit:Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Arun Srinivasan
23 days ago
Jake DeBrusk habitually tormented the Toronto Maple Leafs throughout this career. It’s entirely possible he could be crossing the Atlantic Division in a matter of weeks.
DeBrusk and the Maple Leafs have mutual interest ahead of free agency, Nick Alberga of The Leafs Nation reports. The 27-year-old posted 19 goals and 40 points in 80 games last season, before adding five goals and 11 points in 13 playoff contests. He told reporters following the Bruins’ elimination that he played with a broken hand from January-to-April.
Nick Kypreos of the Toronto Star also reported that there’s mutual interest between both parties.
DeBrusk is a menace in transition and these qualities were apparent during Boston’s 2024 first-round series against Toronto. He punished the Maple Leafs in Game 1 by getting out in transition, winning pucks back and putting defenders on their heels. DeBrusk primarily played with Brad Marchand and Charlie Coyle last season, earning a 46 percent Corsi during the regular season but they crushed teams in transition and made the most of their high-danger chances. He finished T14th in the NHL with 15 rush attempts at 5-on-5 via Natural Stat Trick and would provide a different element of speed, while looking to turn defensive impacts into instant offense.
“I understand that business is business,” DeBrusk said in May to Joe Pohoryles of NHL.com. “I’ve been here for a while. I’ve seen [a lot] of deals get done with guys and things, so I kind of understand, I guess, what their side is and how they usually operate. So I wasn’t necessarily completely surprised, but I thought it’d be done and things would all work out earlier, I guess. But in saying that, getting to this year was really stressful on me and it took a lot, so I’m just looking forward to getting away, to be honest.”
It’s only natural as part of the Bruins-Maple Leafs fans but DeBrusk hasn’t always endeared himself well to Maple Leafs fans. DeBrusk was the recipient of a retaliatory cross-check from Nazem Kadri in 2019, which earned Kadri a series-long suspension and almost certainly led to his Maple Leafs exit, culminating in an ill-fated trade to the Colorado Avalanche. Kadri went on to win a Stanley Cup while the Maple Leafs remain in perpetual playoff stagnation.
We’ll keep you posted as more details become available.

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