3 Players the Toronto Maple Leafs Should Pursue This Summer
With the Buds out of the playoffs, the focus now turns to how to improve the team over the summer.
The Blue and White surprised many people this season by making the playoffs and making the series with the Bruins one of the best of the first round.
If the Leafs want to remain a competitive and exciting team, they will need to pursue some players this offseason who can give them a boost.
Here are three players the Maple Leafs should consider acquiring this summer.
Cal Clutterbuck is a player whom every NHL team needs.
He is a gritty, high-energy type of player who brings a physical and intimidating presence every time he steps on the ice.
Clutterbuck is known as a hitting machine when he is on the ice, and this would serve a tough Leafs team well.
Don't believe me? In the 2008-09 campaign, the man affectionately known as “Clutter” set an NHL record for the most hits in a single season with 356. The record was later broken by Dustin Brown.
The former Oshawa General would also be a good presence in the locker room and is currently one of the most popular members on the Wild's roster.
He would also provide some valuable offense to the Leafs' bottom six, as he has accumulated 34 and 27 points his past couple of years before having his production slow during this shortened season.
The Welland, Ontario, native would bring some energy, physicality and a little scoring if the Buds decide to make a run for him.
Keith Yandle is a very talented defenseman who currently patrols the blue line for the Phoenix Coyotes.
The Blue and White expressed interest in gaining his services at the most recent trade deadline, and I don`t expect their interest has waned much.
Yandle is considered by many to be one of the top offensive defensemen in the NHL today. He`s a smooth skater with plenty of offensive upside, and at only 26 years old, he will soon be entering his prime.
His defensive game is improving by leaps and bounds, and the former Moncton Wildcat has also been remarkably consistent in terms of games played and points scored in his past few seasons.
Since the 2008-09 season, he has laced up for every game for the Coyotes.
His points numbers are great, too, and in the past four seasons, he has scored 41, 59, 43 and 30 points, respectively
He has also been a plus player the past four seasons.
Getting Yandle would provide a big defenseman who could play significant minutes and add some offensive flair to the Maple Leafs' back end.
He's steady and an excellent skater who is still a few years away from his prime.
He also possesses valuable playoff experience that could help the Buds down the road.
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There has been much speculation about New Jersey Devil power forward David Clarkson signing with the Maple Leafs.
Clarkson grew up a Leafs fan, and he should warrant some genuine interest from the Blue and White for a variety of reasons.
Clarkson would bring many skills to the Leafs, should they sign him, of course.
He is a big body on forward, he knows how to put the puck in the back of the net and he can get under an opponent's skin and fight if need be.
The Mimico native is also very durable for the rough-and-tumble style he employs.
Clarkson would be a nice addition to the Maple Leafs. He's an excellent teammate, tough as nails, competes night in and night out and will score some goals to boot.
That is exactly what the Buds need on the front end to help make them an elite team.
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