The Edmonton Oilers are looking to sell some players at the trade deadline as their playoff hopes have evaporated. Their top name on the market is Patrick Maroon, but there are conflicting reports regarding whether or not he will be traded, and to whom if he does.
The latest news from Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman revealed that the Toronto Maple Leafs have been keeping a close eye on Maroon, as they prepare to potentially prepare a trade offer for his services.
As Friedman mentions in his hit on Saturday night's "Headlines" segment on Hockey Night in Canada, he's not sure where he'd fit in the lineup, but that there were "rumblings" this week that the Leafs reached out to Edmonton about possibly acquiring Maroon.
Friedman notes that a major surprise trade would have to occur in order for this trade to happen, because at the moment, there's no room for the Leafs to make any acquisitions. They sit at the 23 man roster limit right now, and still have to deal with the case of Nikita Soshnikov.
The Russian forward had his conditioning stint extended in the American Hockey League, but it ends today, and cannot be extended further. If Toronto wants to call him up, they will be forced to either demote someone to the AHL to make room for him, trade someone away (or trade Soshnikov), or place him on waivers to allow him to continue to play with the Toronto Marlies.
In that last scenario, Soshnikov becomes a freebie to teams around the league, and it's believed that a GM would claim him should he hit the waiver wire, so it's the option that Lou Lamoriello is trying to avoid.
As far as Maroon goes, his potential acquisition by the Leafs is directly tied with the fate of Soshnikov, and likely Josh Leivo as well. The young forward requested a trade because he wants to play, and having him off the roster also frees up a spot.
Finally, with those two possibly gone, there's still the question of where Maroon fits in. The Leafs have Zach Hyman, Patrick Marleau, James van Riemsdyk, and Leo Komarov on the left wing, where Maroon also plays.
There's been speculation that both JvR and Komarov could be traded before the deadline, but on the same segment, it was revealed that two teams were told that van Riemsdyk is not available. So for Maroon to fit in the lineup, it could point to Komarov being traded away, which would certainly be interesting.
In any event, Toronto doesn't seem to be the most logical landing spot for Maroon, but they are holding discussions with Edmonton about him nonetheless.