Elliotte Friedman on the Sportsnet panel.
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Maple Leafs showing interest in two veteran defenseman this off-season

Published May 11, 2024 at 9:28 PM

The Toronto Maple Leafs have reportedly shown interest in signing two veteran defensemen this off-season. Both are due a hefty new contract this off-season and might enjoy the bright lights.

Elliotte Friedman has noted that either Brett Pesce and/or Brandon Montour will receive offers to come play in Canada. Both players would be incredible upgrades to the Leafs' already thinning blueline.

Pesce, 29, is a strong shutdown defenseman who plays physical. The 6-foot-3 right-side, right-shot defenseman is an immediate upgrade for the Toronto Maple Leafs should they be able to sign him.

While Pesce took a step back in production only posting three goals and ten assists for 13 points in 70 games this season, he was still incredibly effective for a well-rounded Carolina Hurricanes defense.

The only barrier would be Pesce likely demanding a hefty pay raise right around the $7 million mark, but Toronto needs an upgrade via free agency and not trade.

Montour didn't have another 73-point season, but his eight goals and 25 assists for 33 points in 66 games were still impressive nonetheless. Montour, 30, would man Toronto's first power play unit and provide a significant right-side, right-shot upgrade at the defensive position.

Montour's contract demands are probably far higher than what the Leafs are willing to pay as he would be looking for money north of what Pesce would demand.

If Toronto can find the cap room and sign one or both of Brett Pesce and Brandon Montour, this would be a significant upgrade and a strong defensive core to build around long-term.
May 11   |   1190 answers
Maple Leafs showing interest in two veteran defenseman this off-season

Do you think Toronto could sign Brandon Montour or Brett Pesce?

Yes, they will sign Pesce and not Montour..21317.9 %
Yes, they will sign Montour and not Pesce.33528.2 %
They will sign neither guy.64253.9 %
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