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NHL Rumours: Maple Leafs Identify Goaltender as Upgrade in Net

Welcome to another edition of NHL Rumours! The carousel that is the rumour mill is churning and things are growing as free agency nears. Even though Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals is done, offseason mode is in full swing. Today we focus on the Toronto Maple Leafs and addressing the goaltending.

NHL Rumours

Rumour: Elliote Friedman on 32 Thoughts podcast links the Maple Leafs to Jacob Markstrom

Even though the Stanley Cup Finals is underway, the buzz surrounding players around the league is growing. One position of interest is going to be the goaltending. There are key names that are free agents, but it’s the trade market that is going to dominate things.

One of the key names on the list is Jacob Markstrom, who should be in high demand. According to Friedman, the New Jersey Devils have checked back in and talks are ongoing. The two teams nearly had a deal completed to send him to New Jersey, but it did not go through. With a full summer to iron out the details, Markstrom to New Jersey is possible. However, another team is in the mix and it is the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Maple Leafs Addressing the Goaltending

This set of NHL Rumours makes sense for the Maple Leafs. It is no secret that they will need to search for goaltending. The Maple Leafs have a solid young goalie in Joseph Woll, but will need to supplement and add something to go along with him. Both Martin Jones and Ilya Samsonov are free agents and could test the market. Although, Samsonov is coming off a poor season and could return on a friendlier deal.

Samsonov had a tough start to the season and was sent down to the Toronto Marlies. He came back rejuvenated and went on to finish the year strong. Overall, he finished the year with a 3.13 goals against average, .890 save percentage, and -8.1 goals saved above expected. Safe to say, Markstrom is an immediate upgrade.

Markstrom comes with term, as he has two years left on his contact. Also, he has a salary cap hit of $6 million per season and a no movement clause. His numbers were significantly better, with a 2.78 goals against average and a .905 save percentage. Further, his 13.7 goals saved above expected was ninth in the league.

Toronto would have to sweeten the pot, as the Devils have a much higher draft pick to offer. It’ll be interesting to see if Brad Treliving can reunite himself with his former goalie and help shore up the Maple Leafs crease.

Main Photo: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports


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