Hello, and welcome to the first edition of Bleeding Blue and White . The purpose of this article is to review the latest news, moves and rumours in Leafs Nation, and to do it in an in-depth way.
According to recent reports, Bobby Ryan is headed to Toronto in the next couple of weeks for a package that may or may not include Tomas Kaberle.
Some additional rumblings have the Leafs negotiating with the San Jose Sharks, Dallas Stars, and Chicago Blackhawks. Given the recent cap issues caused by the Hjalmarsson offer sheet, at least the Chicago deal would be excluding Kaberle.
Bobby Ryan, the most coveted winger by Leafs Nation this offseason, appears to be on the way to the blue and white—at least according to various, unnamed Internet sources.
While Brian Burke is clearly interested in bringing the truculent wingman into the mix, the asking price may be too high. Kaberle and a young player with some NHL experience and potential seem to be the starting point to any trade talks.
With the recent Phil Kessel deal, any trade moving young pieces such as Schenn, Kadri, or Bozak seem to be off limits, and rightly so. Which leads me to assume this rumour falls into the dreaded Eklund category of news.
After breaking from tradition and offering a deal to restricted free agent Hjalmarsson, the Sharks feel they need to add to their defence. Tomas Kaberle could be a cost-effective solution to the blueline and provide a needed one-two offensive punch with Dan Boyle.
With Devin Setoguchi, the Leafs acquire a player under 24 who has scored 51 goals in his past two seasons. Setoguchi will come somewhere between $3-4 million a year, but is already a second line winger with potential for more.
For San Jose, they acquire that extra piece that may be able to push them over the cusp, and to the Cup.
When it comes to the Dallas and Chicago rumours, I honestly don't see how anything could occur. The Leafs don't have many assets they could trade to the Blackhawks for any player of note, with the exception of a deal for Kopecky involving picks as cap relief.
While Dallas could use Kaberle, they don't have enough depth up front to trade the desired top-six forward, so don't see much occurring in the ways of talks in the lone star state.
The Leafs currently sit with a roster that looks like this—
Kulemin - Bozak - Kessel
Unfilled - Kadri - Versteeg
Sjostrom- Grabovski / Hanson - Armstrong
Brown - Mitchell - Orr
Phaneuf - Gunnarsson
Beauchemin - Schenn
Kaberle - Komisarek
Extras: Finger, Lebda
Giguere - Gustavsson
If Leafs' management can figure out what to do with their surplus of centers and defencemen, this roster would be fine going into the season. With Burke's desire for open roster spots, however, it becomes clear that moves will be made to address the roster issues.