The Toronto Maple Leafs know they need to rely on the draft if they want to avoid any shortcuts in their rebuilding process.
The club is scheduled to select No. 4 overall in the 2015 NHL Draft, but the Maple Leafs would consider moving down if it means adding prospects or stockpiling picks. If the price is right, a trade could come.
“It’s something we would definitely look at,” Leafs interim co-GM Kyle Dubas told The Toronto Star on Saturday. “If someone else was adamant about a player, we’re pretty comfortable with the players in that (4-6) cluster.”
Toronto does not have their own second-round pick, but they acquired Nashville’s first-round pick in a mid-season trade involving defenceman Cody Franson.
“We need to be acquiring as many draft pick assets as we can, as many prospects as we can,” said Dubas. If there was something that made sense, we’d be open to listening and having some thorough discussions on the fourth pick.”
The Maple Leafs are rumoured to be looking at London forward Mitch Marner, and Boston College defenceman Noah Hanifin at No. 4 if forwards Connor McDavid, Jack Eichel, and Dylan Strome go with the top three picks.
“Everyone is feeling us out,” Mark Hunter, the Leafs other interim co-GM, told The Star. “They’re talking to (president) Brendan Shanahan too. There’s lots of talk going on. Nothing concrete.”
The 2015 NHL Draft takes place June 26-27 in Sunrise, Florida.