Maple Leafs acquire Muzzin from Kings

Maple Leafs acquire Muzzin from Kings

Maple Leafs acquire Muzzin from Kings

But Muzzin, a potential unrestricted free agent in 2020, will at least surpass Maple Leafs teammate Jake Gardiner, a potential 2019 UFA, in NHL.com's fantasy defenseman rankings this week.

In return for Muzzin, the Leafs parted ways with two prospects, neither of whom have seen any National Hockey League time to date.

Forward Carl Grundstrom, the rights to unsigned draft choice Sean Durzi and Toronto's first round selection in the 2019 NHL Draft go to L.A.in return.

Despite Dubas staunchly defending the Leafs' blueline throughout training camp and into the season, Toronto has struggled on its breakouts and repeated defensive errors have cost them against the league's upper-echelon of teams. "This season, I think he's been our best defenceman over all and he's been really, really consistent, which is, I think, something that every player battles with is consistency. We're not comfortable with where we are, and now we have to make decisions for the best of the organization going forward". Although he's not the elite caliber defenseman that many were speculating the Leafs would target, Muzzin is a significant upgrade that comes without Dubas having to give up roster players in addition to the first-round pick, which should be a late first-rounder anyway. Did the Leafs give up too much or will it be worth the price?

When you look at the kind of game Grundstrom plays, you see why the Kings were interested. Grundstrom will bring physical play into the corners and be a pain for the defenders in puck battles.

The move sets up the Leafs in both the long and short term.

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With Muzzin joining Rielly on the top defence pair - there was no immediate confirmation from either Dubas or Leafs head coach Mike Babcock that this is the plan, but no one expects otherwise - Ron Hainsey will probably move down to the third pair with Travis Dermott.

Durzi was selected by the Maple Leafs in the second-round (52nd overall) of the 2018 NHL Draft. "I'm excited to come and put on a Leafs jersey".

Muzzin has also appeared in 50 career playoff games, recording seven goals and 13 assists for 20 points, winning the Stanley Cup with Los Angeles in 2014.

The Kings (20-26-4) sit last in the Western Conference with 44 points from 50 games.

Gardiner missed the last two games with back spasms. "I'm more of an offensive guy, a guy who can run the power play".

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