On the Toronto Maple Leafs …
Steve Simmonds of the Toronto Sun: believes the best way for new Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas to make a splash is to sign pending UFA John Tavares.
He’ll likely have to battle former Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello as it looks like he’ll end up with Islanders despite them not acknowledging that they are talking.
Adding Tavares would give the Leafs a 1-2 combo that would come close to Penguins Sidney Crosby and Evgeny Malkin.
If Dubas were able to land Tavares, they could then look at trading William Nylander for defensive help.
Dubas will have to bring in a new assistant GM to replace ‘him’, and they need keep Mark Hunter in the fold if possible.
The New York Rangers may have some interest in Maple Leafs assistant coach D.J. Smith and Toronto Marlies head coach Sheldon Keefe.
On John Tavares and Max Pacioretty …
Chris Nichols of FRS Hockey: Elliotte Friedman and Oilers Now host Bob Stauffer were talking about John Tavares and who might be interested, and who might he be willing to talk to. The Montreal Canadiens are obviously going to want to be involved.
Friedman believes that since most teams would like to at least speak with him, Tavares and his agent could sit down and narrow the list of teams that they want to talk to, making the process a little easier.
“San Jose makes a lot of sense,” continued Friedman. “I think Vegas makes sense. But the one thing I really believe is somebody is going to come out of nowhere and I’m trying to figure out who that is.
“Like if you’re the Pittsburgh Penguins, are you going to do it. Are you going to say, ‘What’s it going to take.’
“I think everybody is going to call him. I’m sure the Leafs are. I’m sure the Leafs are going to call him and say, ‘Can we make this work.’
Later in Friedman and Stauffer’s conversation, they talked about Canadiens Max Pacioretty. Friedman believes he’ll probably get traded.