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Matthews

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I know this is highly unlikely, but with the way this team is structured, it might make sense to get ahead of the looming salary cap crunch and trade Matthews.

The obvious place to trade him would be Arizona, which means he becomes as irrelevant as Marcel Dionne, with no chance of ever hurting the leafs in the futire.

 

The trade I think would work would be

To Arizona: Matthews, Zaitsev, Bracco

To Toronto: Clayton Keller, Jakob Chychrun, Barrett Hayton, 2019 and 2020 1st round picks.

 

Arizona wins on getting the much better talent, but the leafs take advantage of keeping the roster strong and having much more cap flexibility.

 

Right now, with Matthews, Tavares and Kadri all competing for minutes, there isn't enough to go around. As an example, during the past 2 seasons, Kadri was the 7th leading goal scoring center and this season, playing third fiddle...not so much. Kadri would be a top line center on a number of NHL teams here is third.

 

I would also follow this up, with trading Nylander for Pieterangelo if that offer was still on the table.

 

You lose Matthews and Nylander which is huge, but you would be building a much better team, still with all kinds of skill, but a little harder to play against.

 

 

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