What the Toronto Maple Leafs Need to do to Make a 2024 Stanley Cup Run
Toronto Maple Leafs Stanley Cup Odds
- The Maple Leafs are 10.50 to win the Stanley Cup and 5.75 to win the Eastern Conference at BetMGM Sportsbook
- The Maple Leafs are 12.50 to win the Stanley Cup and 6.50 to win the East at NorthStar Bets
- The Maple Leafs are 11.00 to win the Stanley Cup at PointsBet Canada
We’re on the eve of the NHL’s off-season crazy time, with the draft coming up tonight in Nashville, followed by the beginning of free agency on July 1.
A Canadian team hasn’t won the Stanley Cup since 1993 (the Montreal Canadiens), an abomination that Canadian hockey fans want corrected.
Let’s take a look at what the Canadian teams need to do to turn the tide on that and bring a Cup back to Canadian soil. Here we look at what the sports betting are for the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Should the Maple Leafs Keep Team Core?
The Toronto Maple Leafs are right up there as one of the NHL betting favourites, but where they go from here, to push it over the top, is being debated in the city this week.
BetMGM this morning has early NHL Futures and lists the Leafs at 10.50 to win the Cup next season, behind only the Colorado Avalanche (9.00) and tied with the Edmonton Oilers, and the shortest odds at 5.75 to win the Eastern Conference. NorthStar Bets has the Leafs at 12.50 as well, and the shortest odds at 6.50 to win the East. PointsBet Canada has the Leafs at 11.00 to win the Cup, behind the Avalanche (9.00), and tied with the Oilers.
The debate is whether to walk back the core four of their lineup, all of whom are under contract for this upcoming season – Auston Matthews (making $11.6 million this upcoming season, according to CapFriendly), John Tavares ($11 million), Mitch Marner ($10.9 million) and William Nylander ($6.9 million).
Matthews and Nylander are eligible to sign new deals this Sunday, and outlets like Sportsnet have been reporting on how aggressively new general manager Brad Treliving has been working on getting those deals done.
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman wrote the other day that he thought Matthews was going to re-sign with the Leafs, with a four- or five-year term.
The bigger gap is in the negotiations between Nylander and the Leafs, according to Luke Fox at SportsNet.
For those pushing to break up the core four, you might get your way, since if it’s obvious the Leafs and Nylander won’t be able to meet on a contract Treliving will be sure to shop him around the league for a trade.
Maple Leafs and the Salary Cap
According to CapFriendly, if you include those players on LTIR, the Leafs have around $15 million in cap space. The team has six defencemen under contract – including Mark Giordano, whose set to make just $800,000, but whose limitations because of his age (39) were exposed during the playoff loss to the Florida Panthers.
If he retires, which is certainly possible, that frees a little bit more money.
Another key is somehow finding a way to jettison G Matt Murray and his $4.6 million salary, which will require some real magician-ship. It will cost prospects or draft picks to convince another team to take on the injury-prone Murray, heading into the last year of his contract.
In the end, it isn’t up to us – Treliving, in also announcing that coach Sheldon Keefe is coming back, is walking back a roster that finished fourth in the Eastern Conference (50-21-11, for 111 points), but, once again, failed in the playoffs (in a season where there was real opportunity, with the Boston Bruins and Colorado Avalanche getting knocked out in the first round).
The Leafs currently only have seven forwards under contract. What is the new style of play that Treliving and Keefe have already spoken about (away from the puck possession style they’ve played the last several seasons), and who do they add to augment that new style, and – finally – push themselves over the top in the playoffs?
This is where things will get very interesting in Leafs-land over the next week.
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