Much of the talk around the Toronto Maple Leafs has concerned the big names on expiring contracts this season. While there's still no clear evidence of which direction Lou Lamoriello will take in the cases of James van Riemsdyk, Leo Komarov, and Tyler Bozak, it seems pretty obvious that he will be looking to trade Matt Martin before February 26th.
It's been talked about recently, as Martin's last game was against the Colorado Avalanche on January 22nd, and has since been made a regular healthy scratch.
Mike Babcock has realized, to an extent, that his young speedy wingers are more effective in the lineup than Martin, despite being a favourite in the locker room, and having his use. The simple fact is that he's been outranked by Kasperi Kapanen, and like Josh Leivo, Martin is an extra.
Elliotte Friedman poured more fuel on the Martin trade fire in his latest edition of 31 Thoughts, stating that Lamoriello would be willing to eat salary to get him playing somewhere else.
He mentioned Martin's previous team as a club the Leafs have had talks with.
"I also think the Maple Leafs would keep money to help Matt Martin find a new home. No doubt they have checked with the Islanders."
Martin has 11 points in 47 games this season. He played with the Islanders for 6 seasons before eventually joining the Leafs ahead of the 2016-17 season.
This discussion of Martin was in connection to the Leivo trade request, as well as the talks of Nikita Soshnikov being showcased down in the AHL. Friedman added on the 31 Thoughts Podcast that he expects the Russian to be traded without a doubt.
The bottomline is, Lamoriello has a ton of critical decisions to make on the horizon, and the trade deadline is less than three weeks away, so he is running out of time to get his ducks in a row.
How many players will he trade away or keep? Who will he bring in? There has been a ton of information out there, but nothing has transpired as of yet. Things will only continue to heat up as the big day approaches.
Source: 31 Thoughts
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