A non-contact OHL cannot be Plan B for Nick Robertson

A stir was created Friday night when the Canadian Press put an article out over the wire saying no bodychecking will be allowed in upcoming OHL season. The article confirmed these plans with current Minister of Tourism, Culture & Sports (and former Minister of Abandoning Autistic Children) Lisa MacLeod, who said that ‘removing purposeful physical contact from the game was a necessary step to preventing the spread of COVID-19.’ While many, including the Bobfather, were quick to point out that even contact-less hockey does not lend itself to avoiding close-quarters interaction, MacLeod was steadfast in her assertion that this was a necessary step in ensuring a safe return to play and that this was “not a negotiation”. (Update: Ontario Premier Doug Ford later tweeted that this was, indeed, an ongoing discussion and that the hope is the OHL could return with bodychecking, but who knows at this point considering the conflicting messages.)
Naturally, this made us think of “how does this impact the Leafs?”, which lead us to the question of what to do with Nicholas Robertson this year. A quick perusal of most Leafs fans’ mock rosters for the upcoming season has Nick Robertson making the team, but Chris …

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Author: Mark Norman / The Leafs Nation

Apparently the Leafs are actively looking for a defenceman. Who might that be?

Earlier today, Pierre LeBrun started to stir the pot in Toronto by saying that the Maple Leafs “could strike early” in order to give the team a spark heading into the stretch drive. Shortly after, Bob McKenzie doubled down, saying that he believes that the Leafs are “actively” looking for a non-rental defenceman.

Bob McKenzie on TSN1050: I believe the Leafs are actively looking for a RD/LD who can play right with multiple years of term left. At least one+ year, but would prefer 2+ years remaining. No guarantee it gets done but they’re looking. Kapanen, Johnsson, Kerfoot are who teams want
— J (@Account4hockey) January 24, 2020

Okay, so none of this is really new information, per se, but it kind of narrows down what’s going on here. Dubas wants to upgrade the blueline, he wants a guy under control beyond just this year, and other teams are looking at Kasperi Kapanen, Andreas Johnsson, or Alex Kerfoot in return. One of those three was always going to be going out if a defenceman was coming back in order for the salary cap hits to work out, so that makes sense.
Who might …

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Author: Cam Lewis / The Leafs Nation