The Detroit Red Wings are shopping Justin Holl and the Leafs may look to reacquire him
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Insider says another former Leaf is a legitimate option for Toronto at the deadline

Published March 4, 2024 at 4:54 PM

The Toronto Maple Leafs survived an injury scare Saturday night when Ilya Lyubushkin left the game against the New York Rangers following a massive hit from Matt Rempe. Lyubushkin joined the team for a full practice Monday morning ahead of their game against the Boston Bruins. While they addressed their need of a right-shot defenseman by re-acquiring Lyubushkin Thursday evening, Chris Johnston reported this morning that the Leafs are still looking for an additional righty on the blueline.

On today's "32 Thoughts" podcast, Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek noted the same before listing a former Leafs blueliner as a potential option. He was one of the most polarizing blueliners the Leafs have had in recent years. His name is Justin Holl.

"Toronto is looking for right-shot defenseman, you know who's available," asked Friedman, to which Marek replied, "Justin Holl." Friedman responded with a simple "yup".

Holl signed a 3-year deal with the Detroit Red Wings this past off-season that sees him carry a cap hit of $3.4M per season. Holl quickly fell out of favour with Wings head coach Derek LaLonde and has not played since January 31st against the Ottawa Senators.

For it to make any sense for the Leafs to re-acquire Holl, they would have to get him 75% retained which would bring his AAV down to $850K per season for the rest of his deal. Given that the Wings are clearly anxious to move on from Holl, if the Leafs didn't have salary retained, it would not cost much to complete the trade. It would only make sense for the Leafs if they could get him with 75% of his contract retained however, so the cost to acquire the 32-year-old with that much retained salary may not make it worth it.

During his four full seasons with the Leafs, Holl became a bit of a whipping boy in Toronto because he would have very good games, but they were often followed by games where he would make one (or two) glaring mistakes that would end up in the back of the Leafs net and cost his team the game. During his final season, he had worn out his welcome with the fans and Sheldon Keefe even stopped trusting him in a lot of situations.

In 35 games with the Wings this season, Holl has just 5 points and 22 penalty minutes. In 320 career games Holl has registered 11 goals and 87 points to go along with 172 penalty minutes.

March 4   |   454 answers
Insider says another former Leaf is a legitimate option for Toronto at the deadline

Would you welcome Justin Holl back at 75% retained?

Yes, he would be good as a 7th defenseman9821.6 %
No, it's not worth it20244.5 %
I'll put a pencil through my eye if it happens15433.9 %
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