The San Jose Sharks should trade for Josh Leivo.
The San Jose Sharks need depth in their lineup. The Toronto Maple Leafs have an apparent need to make a decision on Josh Leivo’s status with the team.
The truth is, the Toronto Maple Leafs have mishandled the Josh Leivo situation for quite some time. He’s a valuable player at 5v5 from what he’s shown in the chances he’s had to play.
His issue hasn’t been his play, it’s been having a coach that likes certain players and makes it hard to break through the blinders.
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Over his 53 game career, Leivo has put up some good numbers. When he’s on the ice, the Toronto Maple Leafs allowed 7.12 less shot attempts per 60 minutes. He’s also a positive possession player to the tune of 51.34% CF.
Leivo’s play is good more often than it’s bad, but he still hasn’t been given a real chance in the NHL. The Sharks can provide that by bringing him to San Jose. He’s an immediate upgrade over several players – some of whom the Sharks have just dabbled in during injuries – and could be a valuable depth player down the stretch.
While he doesn’t necessarily drive scoring chances, he’s not a hindrance offensively. Leivo isn’t exactly playing with the cream of the crop most times he’s in Toronto’s lineup. His 1.77 P/60 would place him 2nd on San Jose for 5v5 scoring per sixty minutes.
This wouldn’t be a rental move (so long as his history continues to repeat itself). This is a move you make where you can re-sign an effective depth player for cheap and move on to other areas of concern in your lineup.
What’s the price?
The question of cost still remains. What will the cost be for a good depth player who has publicly declared his wish to move on?
Leivo is still an unknown in the hockey world, so that’s going to help the price remain low. He’s a 24 year old player with potential. That’s where he sits in the eyes of the outside right now – and he just cut the deck for Lou Lamoriello.
Maybe the price is an average prospect. Maybe it’s a 3rd or 4th round pick. It’s hard to imagine someone paying more than that for a player in a position like Josh Leivo, but stranger things have happened.
Funny enough, the Toronto Maple Leafs have both the Sharks 2nd and 3rd round picks in the upcoming draft. Clearly that rules out a 3rd from 2018.
I’d be willing to take the risk of randomness in a future third round draft pick and turn it into Josh Leivo. It’s a pretty easy trade to make if you want to improve your teams depth with a young player.