Toronto Maple Leafs Speculation: Why Leafs Should Not Target Ryan Getzlaf

Brad LeClairCorrespondent IAugust 26, 2012

DENVER, CO - MARCH 12:  Ryan Getzlaf #15 of the Anaheim Ducks celebrates a goal against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on March 12, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The Avalanche defeated the Ducks 3-2 in overtime.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

All this talk this offseason was about the Leafs' pursuit of either a starting goaltender or that ever elusive first-line center.

We are now more than two months into the offseason, and all the Leafs have done so far is trade Luke Schenn for James van Riemsdyk and added to their bottom six depth by adding center Jay McClement.

So when a name like Ryan Getzlaf comes up in trade talks, you are instantly drawn to his name as a Leafs fans.

Not since Mats Sundin has there been a Leafs centreman with his combination of size, skill, grit and leadership. Adding the 6'4" 230-pound Getzlaf would instantly make the Leafs a contender in the Eastern Conference but with some obvious risks.

This article will center around why Ryan Getzlaf doesn't make sense right now for the Leafs.

First off, we look at the pending lockout and whether or not there will be an NHL season, if at all.

Whether the year starts on time, a month into the season or after the All-Star Break, the fact remains that you could be trading for Getzlaf and getting him for only a limited amount of time.

Why risk the obvious and trade quality prospects and such for a possible rental?

The worst part about Getzlaf as a Leafs fan is that he's expiring at $5.3 million and will likely command a $7+ million contract this offseason. The question is: Is he worth it?

Trading for Getzlaf in a possible shortened season along with him expiring at the end of the season are the obvious drawbacks in going after him.

Here's my alternative.

With over eight players expiring at the end of the season—and especially the deadweight contracts of Tim Connolly and Matthew Lombardi—why not just offer Getzlaf a deal he can't refuse and have him play for the Leafs in 2013-14?

Doing this will hopefully allow the likes of Nazem Kadri, Matt Frattin and likely a guy like Joe Colborne a chance to shine with the Leafs, while also allowing the Leafs to maintain a fairly stacked farm system that they would deplete if they decided to trade for Getzlaf this season.

In the end, going after Getzlaf now makes little to no sense for the Leafs going forward. If you keep hearing rumors of Getzlaf to Toronto, I would just ignore them. Why would the Leafs ever risk long-term like that for a possible short season fix, if a fix at all?

Thanks for reading... until next time!