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Report: Maple Leafs May Acquire Additional 1st Round Pick for the draft

Published June 11, 2023 at 7:41 PM
BY AUSTIN KELLY
     
With the NHL Draft days away, speculation has already begun about the Toronto Maple Leafs, and what they may do at the NHL Draft.

The Leafs could be primed to trade up at the NHL Draft



The Toronto Maple Leafs have spoken, or plan to speak, to multiple prospects during the Draft Combine, including a few names that could be in the Top 16, including Colby Barlow, Brayden Yager & Axel Sandin-Pellikka.

Barlow is planning to speak to the Leafs before the Draft. Barlow is NHL Central Scouting's #12 NA Skater, and a potential lottery pick, being ranked 8th by Bob McKenzie, 10th by Craig Button & 9th by Sportsnet.



Brayden Yager, another potential lottery pick, rated 11 for North Americans by Central Scouting, already spoke to the Leafs ahead of the Draft.


Both Yager and Barlow are high-end forward prospects, Yager a highly skilled Center who can play on the wing, and Barlow, a terrific goalscorer with good size, they will both be players Leafs fans will be happy with if they're available at 28, which would be a surprise to many.

Also reported to have spoken to Toronto are Swedish D Axel Sandin-Pellikka, a smooth skating offensive Defenseman who's projected to go early in the first round, and Gabriel Perreault, who broke the US NTDP record for most Points (132) by a Draft Eligible for the American U18 team, 5 points ahead of Projected Top 5 Pick Will Smith.

Will the Leafs make a move?



With Toronto's top-four offensive core of Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, William Nylander & John Tavares being constantly speculated in trade rumors from all corners of the internet, if Toronto is able to make a shock move to send out one of those players, they could get a very high pick back, although none of the players reported to have spoken to are players projected to go Top-5.

Some fans of the Leafs derided former-GM Kyle Dubas for his perceived liking of smaller skilled prospects as opposed to more bigger, NHL-style players. Despite criticism, under the GM leadership of Dubas, Toronto had many strong players come into the Leafs system including current Leafs Timothy Liljegren, Pontus Holmberg & Rookie Matthew Knies, NHLers Rasmus Sandin & Sean Durzi, and top prospects Topi Niemela, Fraser Minten, Nick Molenhauer, Nick Robertson & Nikita Grebyonkin. The results have looked successful despite murmurs of criticism at times.

It isn't unusual however to speak to players ahead of their projected range in case they fall. It's due diligence by the Leafs making sure to look into any potential options that they may have, whether at their pick or earlier.

Also either spoken to or expected to be spoken to by the Leafs include Quentin Musty who led all OHL Draft Eligibles in PPG with (1.47) behind Colby Barlow (1.32), Kasper Halttunen, a highly rated Finn with good size who struggled in the Top Finnish Men's League but finished off the year with a strong U18s. Tom Willander, a high-IQ Swedish defenseman who had his draft stock rise after a good U18s showing. Bradly Nadeau, a small, yet mobile forward who had one of the best BCHL seasons in the last 10 years, and D Oliver Bonk, son of former NHLer Radek Bonk.

Read More At Maple Leafs Insider - The Leafs could be considering acquiring another 1st round pick or moving up in the draft this year
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June 11   |   166 answers
Report: Maple Leafs May Acquire Additional 1st Round Pick for the draft

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