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Monday Mailbag: California Edition

It’s time to overreact to one (1) loss to the Bruins, just in time for the Leafs to head on their California road trip! This should be fun!

In terms of the Norris discussion, I assumed that his point totals would have started to slow down when Auston Matthews got hurt, but it’s almost gotten better. After an insane start of 13 points in six games, he dropped off and had only one point in his next five. However, after Matthews got hurt, he’s stepped up again and put up seven points in six games.

However, he ranks sixth among defensemen with 10 games played in shooting percentage, and nine of his 21 points have come on the power play. Even if this does hold up, and it likely won’t, I feel like he’ll lose some Norris votes for being on a stacked Leafs team anyways.

Well, if he hasn’t signed by December 1st, there really isn’t a whole lot the Leafs could do. They could either keep him, or trade him.

If they keep him, that’s a top six forward that the Leafs have just sitting around during a year where they could be Cup contenders. Now, this does create one problem down the road, in that the Leafs now have to sign all three of their young forwards at the same time. That won’t be a fun one. Hopefully something can get done, but the longer this goes on, the less likely it is to happen.

If they trade him, there isn’t a huge market for him. This would probably be a trade similar to when Winnipeg traded Evander Kane to Buffalo. Buffalo was interested because he was a top six forward, but he was injured for the rest of the year during a season the Sabres were tanking, so they didn’t need his skill that season anyways. So, the Leafs would need to find a team in that situation to probably trade with, because I doubt any Cup contenders want to trade off their roster for a player that won’t play for them this year. But, then the team would have to have a roster player that could benefit the Leafs right now.

Trading Nylander after December 1st would be a complicated mess. I think if December 1st hits and Nylander isn’t signed and is still on the team, he stays there until he can be re-signed again, and at that point, the Leafs will either re-sign him, or trade him.

It might have something to do with the fact that Mike Babcock trusts a 37-year old defenseman to try and shut them down at both even strength and the power play (he was on the ice for all four goals that the Bergeron line scored on Saturday).

No.

1.Bruce Springsteen is overrated.

2.Matthews literally has his own theme song.

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