NHL Trade Rumors: Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks—Opposites Attract?

February 9th, 2011 by Matt Wiseman Leave a reply »
The rumor mills have churned out another intriguing trade possibility, this time involving a pair of Canadian teams from opposite ends of the spectrum.

For a few weeks, speculation has grown about the possibility of the Toronto Maple Leafs parting ways with forward Kris Versteeg, who was acquired in a trade with the defending Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks over the offseason.

Versteeg has not turned out to be an ideal linemate for Phil Kessel as the Leafs had hoped, but he has put on the board similar numbers that found him success in Chicago. His versatile play has gotten him 14 goals and 21 assists thus far.

With those numbers, 35 points in 51 games, Versteeg has equaled the point output of streaky sniper Kessel.

Versteeg came over from Chicago as a solid third-line player, and deserves much credit for consistent play that has him on pace to notch over 20 goals. Combine a good season in Toronto with previous playoff success and the Leafs have a valuable trading commodity in Versteeg.

If Brian Burke was to decide to trade Versteeg before or on the Feb. 28 deadline the question becomes, what will the return be?

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