As the February 27 trade deadline continues to inch closer, the odds of Mikhail Grabovski staying with the Toronto Maple Leafs are dwindling by the day.
Despite being an assistant captain, despite being with the team since 2008, the organization is showing absolutely no loyalty to Grabovski according to the Toronto Sun.
GM Brian Burke hasn’t offered the unrestricted free agent a new deal, and at this point it doesn’t look like it is going to happen. It’s a shame because judging by Grabovski’s comments; he doesn’t want to go anywhere:
It's my home right now, you know? If they want me here, I appreciate it. My job is to work hard and give my best on the ice. I think more about hockey than about my future. I know if I play well, I can stay with the same team.
Clearly he would prefer to stay, but it sounds like a player with 18 goals and 18 assists, including eight points in the last three games, isn’t in the franchise's future.
So where might he end up? According to the Sun, Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan of the Anaheim Ducks, Ales Hemsky of the Edmonton Oilers, Tuomo Ruutu of the Carolina Hurricanes and Ryan Clowe of the San Jose Sharks have all been on the Leafs' radar.
With the playoffs in sight, disrupting the chemistry of the team is very risky right now. His teammates love playing with him and he's currently playing his best hockey of the season. But then again, letting a player of Grabovski caliber go for nothing in the offseason is plain stupid.
Tough decisions to make in Toronto.