Chris Tanev may be heading back to Vancouver
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Leafs' patience may end up costing them their top trade target, according to multiple insiders

Published February 1, 2024 at 9:37

With most of the NHL on their bye weeks heading into the All-Star break, we haven't been afforded much entertainment or newsworthy features this week. However that changed on Wednesday evening when the Calgary Flames orchestrated a deal that sent All-Star Elias Lindholm to the Vancouver Canucks for a package that included Andrei Kuzmenko.

Kuzmenko, prospects Hunter Brzustewicz and Joni Jurmo, as well as a 2024 first round pick and a conditional 2024 4th round pick were sent to Calgary for the soon-to-be unrestricted free agent. However in the midst of the trade, top Leafs trade target Chris Tanev almost found his way back to Vancouver.

Tanev is currently one of the more sought after defensemen ahead of this year's trade deadline and while the Toronto Maple Leafs have consistently kicked tires for his services, it seems that maybe he's bound to return to Vancouver.

Rick Dhaliwal, who covers the Vancouver Canucks, was first on the tip that Tanev might be included in the blockbuster deal. However, after some investigative digging, Darren Dreger mentioned that they thought it would be better if they separated the deals instead of simply including Tanev.

It seems as though, for the time being, the Maple Leafs might still have a chance to acquire his services but those odds might be rather slim. Calgary seems to be more than okay with trading within their own division than with the Maple Leafs, who initially wanted the Flames to retain salary. The Canucks will continue to kick tires on Tanev as they look to go all in this season with a completely revamped defensive corps.

If Vancouver does indeed find a way to reacquire Tanev, they will have feature a bolstered defense with Quinn Hughes, Filip Hronek, Nikita Zadorov, Ian Cole, Carson Soucy, Tyler Myers, and Tanev - one of whom will have to be a healthy scratch unless they go the 11/7 route. Of course, we know that Nikita Zadorov's name is out there again in trade rumours as well.

It's not the end of the road for Brad Treliving and company, but with Calgary focusing elsewhere, the Maple Leafs may have to look elsewhere in a very thin market for defensive help.

February 1   |   587 answers
Leafs' patience may end up costing them their top trade target, according to multiple insiders

Are you surprised with how quiet Brad Treliving has been in his first season as Leafs GM?

Yes, it's a shock21837.1 %
No, I knew he'd be different than Dubas19933.9 %
I'm not sure I like his hesitant nature17029 %
He's playing this exactly right00 %
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