Toronto Maple Leafs star defenseman Morgan Rielly
Photo credit: Maple Leafs Hot Stove

Major development unfolds regarding a Morgan Rielly trade

Published May 16, 2024 at 12:27

The Toronto Maple Leafs will make some major changes this off-season and Morgan Rielly could potentially be the first piece to go according to reports.

General Manager Brad Treliving has made it clear that he plans to shake things up this offseason. It's likely that at least one member of the Core Four has played their last game with Toronto, excluding Auston Matthews and William Nylander.

It's widely expected that either Mitch Marner or John Tavares could leave the team before the next season starts. However, these trades might take time to finalize. Morgan Rielly, a 30-year-old defenseman, might be traded before any of the Core Four. He could be looking for a new start at this point in his career.

Matt Larkin from Daily Faceoff explained why trading Rielly might be easier despite his no-movement clause. He noted Rielly's salary and his lesser attachment to Toronto compared to Marner or Tavares.

"Rielly, the longest tenured Leaf, has a deep emotional attachment to the team and its core. He hasn't been a scapegoat, and he was pretty darn good during the 2022-23 playoffs, but he simply isn't an all-situations horse who can shut down the other team's best players.

That said, while he isn't an alpha No. 1 blueliner, he also isn't paid as one. At $7.5 million, he's merely the 23rdľ richest defenseman in the league. He has a full no-movement clause and is under contract six more seasons.

Unlike Marner and Tavares, Rielly didn't grow up in this market. He's a Western Canadian. Is there a chance he'd be willing to waive in the event of a trade simply for a fresh start for the second half of his career?"

Given Rielly's more manageable contract compared to Marner or Tavares, he could be the first to be traded as Treliving explores options to elevate the team.

Do you think this was Morgan Rielly's last shift as a Leaf?

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Major development unfolds regarding a Morgan Rielly trade

Would you trade star defenseman Morgan Rielly if you are the Toronto Maple Leafs?

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