On the Toronto Maple Leafs …
Greg Wyshynski of ESPN: Keys to the Toronto Maple Leafs offseason
1. Making the right decision on James van Riemsdyk – A pending unrestricted free agent scored a career-high 36 goals. Can and do the Maple Leafs want to commit long-term at the money he’ll be looking for? Would he take a discount to stay?
2. Improve their defense – Only four teams gave up more even strength shots and they gave up an average of 33.9 shots per game. They could use two defensemen. Dream scenario would be that Drew Doughty wants to become a free agent next year and the Leafs can somehow trade for him.
3. Find their next GM – Someone other than Lou Lamoriello could be leading their offseason. There has been some speculation that the 75-year old could take a different role with the team. Could Mark Hunter or Kyle Dubas be given the reigns?
Whoever is the GM will need to re-sign RFA William Nylander this offseason and is able to extend next years RFAs Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews.
On potential coaching movement …
Chris Nichols of FanRag Sports: Darren Dreger was on WGR 550 yesterday and was asked about what was going on with regards to the potential front office and coaching movement.
“Aside from the obvious, I mean we know that the Dallas Stars are still going through their process,” noted Dreger. “Likewise the New York Rangers. Beyond that, there’s still speculation around the Islanders. I don’t quite understand that, given that ownership and the club most recently came out with support for that group.”
Dreger adds that if Washington Capitals lose to the Pittsburgh Penguins in round two, they could move on from coach Barry Trotz. Coach Todd McLellan is safe but there will be some other coaching changes in Edmonton. The Anaheim Ducks aren’t bringing Trent Yawney back and he could end up in Edmonton.