Leafs Rumours: Toronto looked into Erik Karlsson before the trade deadline

If you thought you were done with weekly rumours updates on this site after the trade deadline… you’ll eventually be right. For now, we have a bit of a rumour of something that could have been but wasn’t at the deadline. It’s via Elliotte Friedman on 32 Thoughts citing that the Leafs were in on both Mattias Ekholm and Erik Karlsson.
Elliotte’s report is that the Leafs inquired about both players, but it couldn’t make cap sense for them. Ekholm ultimately went to Edmonton and Nashville only retained 4% of the contract in the process, and Erik Karlsson will finish his Norris calibre season in San Jose. That’s where it gets interesting.
Things won’t change for the Sharks after the season ends. They are still needing assets to rebuild and that’s their priority. Things won’t change for Karlsson too much either. He might not have a career year in the remaining four years of his contract, but he is still a premier offensive defenseman and one of the league’s best right-shot defensemen. His contract will take him until he’s 36 and he has a bit more of an injury history than say Mark Giordano, so there might be a steeper dropoff (there often is with elite skaters when age catches up to them), but he potentially still has a lot to offer, although with an $11.5M …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

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