Conor Timmins flipping the puck on his stick at Leafs practice
Photo credit: NHL

All signs point to Leafs planning to trade 25-year-old defenseman

Published January 6, 2024 at 11:54

Since the early stages of the season, Leafs Nation has been waiting with bated breath to see what new GM Brad Treliving has in store for the team's blueline. Treliving made waves early on during the 2023-24 campaign when he revealed that the team was very involved in the trade market in hopes of shoring up their defense. However, as we approach the midway point of the season, the Leafs have still not acquired a defenseman.

A huge part of this, I'm sure, is that Treliving wanted to see what he had in each defenseman on the Leafs' roster. Thus far, the team has deployed at least 10 different defensemen during NHL games, having their depth tested early and often due to a slew of injuries. Now that we've hit the midway mark of the season and the Leafs' blueline is largely very healthy again, we're getting a glimpse of who is on the ins and who is on the outs.

After a remarkable start to his pre-season, posting 6 points in 3 games, Conor Timmins suffered an unfortunate injury, which had cost him nearly two months of action. When he finally made his triumphant return, he was thrust into a larger role than originally anticipated, due to the Leafs' D corps being banged up. Now, he finds himself in the press box most nights, which lends to the idea that the Leafs could package him in a deal with other assets to acquire a defenseman who may play a more pivotal role for the team, or simply move him to recoup a draft pick, since they are quite limited in that area at his point.

There are a number of teams looking to move defensemen right now. Obviously, we know that the Calgary Flames have both Chris Tanev and Noah Hanifin on the market. Columbus has Andrew Peeke. Seattle has Will Borgen. The Flyers have Sean Walker and Nick Seeler. The list goes on and on.

With just 1 month to go until the All-Star break and 2 months until the NHL's trade deadline, I suspect that we're about to see the Leafs really begin to ramp up their efforts to sort out their roster. Obviously, the number one priority in Toronto remains getting Nylander signed to an extension so that Treliving knows what he has available to him cap-wise next season. We do know that the Leafs prefer to target a player or players with term remaining if they are moving assets, so we'll keep an eye on that situation as we move closer to the deadline here.

Timmins, 25, has notched 1 goal and 5 assists, totaling 6 points in 13 games thus far this season. He's also a +4 on the year.

January 6   |   1125 answers
All signs point to Leafs planning to trade 25-year-old defenseman

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