Brian Burke has a reputation for making trades in late January and early February, so don't be surprised if the Toronto Maple Leafs are wheeling and dealing in the next week.
The Leafs currently find themselves in eighth place in the Eastern Conference, so it's assumed they will be buyers between now and the trade deadline. The Maple Leafs have several players who could be considered expendable, including forwards Nikolai Kulemin, Tim Connolly, Tyler Bozak and Matthew Lombardi, along with defencemen Keith Aulie, Mike Komisarek, and Cody Franson. There has also been speculation that the Leafs would consider moving other pieces such as Mikhail Grabovski, Clarke MacArthur, Nazem Kadri, and Luke Schenn.
The Maple Leafs don't want to do too much to disrupt their core, especially considering they're playing their best hockey since before the lockout. But if an upgrade is available and it comes at a reasonable price, Brian Burke would have no problem pulling the trigger.
Evidently, the Leafs' biggest need is a veritable first-line center, but they also lack grit up front, despite the presence of Colby Armstrong, Mike Brown and David Steckel. Colton Orr, who may have been a source of some grit, no longer plays for the big club. It also appears that Colby Armstrong will be out long term.
The team also has players like Darryl Boyce and Joey Crabb, who have been playing more minutes than coach Ron Wilson would prefer. A top-six winger or two wouldn't go to waste.
Here's a look at three star-caliber NHL players who the Maple Leafs could feasibly add via trade in the next month. That's not to say that any of these trades will indeed happen, but rather that they could, without it looking like a bust of a move for either team.