Here we are with another round of grade that trade. Everyone loves these posts, that’s why every site seems to do them. You can’t get enough. We can’t get enough. Well… I guess we could kinda get enough because, with the volume of trades the Leafs had yesterday, most of the TLN contributors were huddled in balls on the floor, rocking back and forth going “no more, no more.” It’s in that spirit that I’m largely taking over the grading myself today. I got some help with the Sandin deal, but I’m flying solo on the smaller ones. I promise to be nice to Luke Schenn, but we’ll save him for last.
Sandin to Washington for Gustafsson and Boston’s 2023 1st round pick: A
The second you say “first round pick” to me, I instantly like the trade. My brain still operates in a pre-2016 world where the idea of the Leafs accumulating 1st round picks is the goal of the season. Couple that with all the love letters written about this draft class and it’s nice to see Toronto back in the game.
Erik Gustafsson is no slouch either. Those aren’t sheltered 3rd pairing minutes that he’s been playing either, that’s a 20 minute a night defenseman that is doing well and is about to be slid into a role that is far more manageable for him. I’d argue the Leafs got the best asset with the pick, and the best defenseman in the deal with Gustafsson, and the Capitals are largely just banking on Sandin being more usable for them immediately and on par with what they’d get with a late first round pick.
In theory, everyone got what they wanted out of this deal, but from my perspective this is a big win for Toronto as it gives them a lot of flexibility for future moves and they’ve cashed out at the right time on a defenseman …
Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation