The Toronto Maple Leafs are a Stanley Cup contender but most NHL analysts feel they still need a big body forward that can score and play a physical style of game.
The Leafs have been tied to Montreal Canadiens forward Josh Anderson and Tyler Bertuzzi. But who else could they target?
Will the Leafs target Lawson Crouse?
Nick Kypreos has a piece on the Toronto Star and states even though the Toronto Maple Leafs have played really well this year, there is one spot they need improvement and that is mostly on the offensive side — that can’t be overlooked.
Kypreos believes the Maple Leafs have two options. Either wait for Matthew Knies and his six-foot-three, 210-pound frame that will hopefully add the much-needed size and energy to the lineup or make a trade for a player that can play physical.
Kypreos feels the Leafs should target the six-foot-four, 220-pound Lawson Crouse. Crouse is not currently being shopped by the Arizona Coyotes but that doesn’t mean GM Bill Armstrong can’t be talked into it.
Crouse, 25, comes with a $4.3 million Coyotes salary cap hit. He was drafted 11th overall by the Florida Panthers in the 1st round of the 2015 NHL entry draft. Currently over a career that spans 7 seasons, he has a total 127 points in 377 games played, and 2 playoffs points in 9 games played.
Crouse or Martha with salary withheld would be an incredible hockey trade but getting Ritchie back would be a good short term alternative.
I think they are going to make a push for O’Reily which would be the best pick up for this year. Crouse and Martha would be long term solutions.
As far as I am concerned Robertson or any of the prospects except Knies are on the table. Kerfoot being part of this trade would be required for future cap concerns although they may be able to keep him for the rest of the year. I think Crouse is the best solution but if that is possible try to get Ritchie also. Kypreos is very good at his job so there maybe truth to this rumour.