3 Potential Trade Destinations for Maple Leafs’ Pierre Engvall

The Toronto Maple Leafs sit with a 5-4-2 record on the season as they get set for a big back-to-back on the weekend against the Boston Bruins and Carolina Hurricanes. The team has been inconsistent this season and one of the biggest reasons is because of the lack of production from the team’s bottom-six forwards.

In particular, Pierre Engvall has been a non-factor for the Maple Leafs so far this season and even though he missed some time during training camp recovering from an ankle injury, it’s been 11 games and Toronto needs more out of him. To me, general manager (GM) Kyle Dubas would be better off trading Engvall and allowing for Nick Robertson to play each and every night this season. Let’s take a look at three potential landing spots for an Engvall trade.

Los Angeles Kings

Any deal involving Engvall will likely need a sweetener from the Maple Leafs if they are going to get back anything of substance to help their lineup. This could include a solid prospect from the Toronto Marlies who could make an impact down the road. Dubas should be in contact with the Los Angeles Kings and see if there’s some interest in a 2-for-1 deal for defenseman Sean Walker.

Related: 3 Potential Trade Destinations for Maple Leafs’ Justin Holl

Latest News & Highlights

Walker is a right-handed defenseman who is signed through next season at $2.65 million against the cap. He has the ability to play in all situations and it would also allow the team to push Justin Holl down the depth chart. Walker has rebounded nicely after double knee surgery and appears to be getting his game back to where it was pre-injury.

The Maple Leafs and Kings have pulled off a few trades together over recent years, with many of those including Maple Leafs wingers heading to the Kings. Engvall could be the latest as the 26-year-old could use a change of scenery after spending his first four NHL seasons in Toronto. At 6-foot-5, and with a 15-goal season in 2021-22, the Kings could see some potential here. Again, someone from the Marlies would have to accompany the Leafs winger if they want anyone to accept a deal, considering Engvall only has scored once in his first 10 games this season.

Arizona Coyotes

One team who is willing to deal this season is the Arizona Coyotes. While they don’t expect to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs this season playing out of a college campus, the ‘Yotes are always willing to accept a bad contract in a trade if it means they receive another piece in the deal. Don’t expect to see the Maple Leafs move a draft pick with Engvall, but the Coyotes could very well accept a young prospect in the package.

Pierre Engvall Toronto Maple Leafs
Pierre Engvall, Toronto Maple Leafs (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Again, I feel the focus should be on defensemen if Toronto trades Engvall and while they won’t be able to land Jakob Chychrun from Arizona, blueliners like Josh Brown and Troy Stecher would both be upgrades to how bad Holl is playing at this time.

Engvall could catch on in Arizona much like Nick Ritchie has after last season’s trade from Toronto. Two teams who don’t mind doing business together, Dubas should be hitting redial here to see what it would take for them to acquire Engvall off their hands.

Anaheim Ducks

The Anaheim Ducks will be open to wheel and deal this season as they are still rebuilding. While someone like John Klingberg could look good in a Maple Leafs’ uniform closer to the trade deadline, perhaps a 1-for-1 swap for defenseman Dmitry Kulikov could be something of interest for both teams.

Dmitry Kulikov Anaheim Ducks
Dmitry Kulikov, Anaheim Ducks (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

With Jake Muzzin out of the lineup, likely for the season, Kulikov could provide the Maple Leafs with another penalty-killing option on their back end. He’s a pending free agent who makes $2.25 million against the cap, the same amount as Engvall. Kulikov does have a modified no-trade clause, which protects him against eight teams; however, joining a team like Toronto would likely interest the 32-year-old defenseman.

So far what I’ve seen out of Engvall is that he’s playing timid coming off his ankle injury. He doesn’t appear to have the explosiveness we are used to seeing out of his stride and for someone 6-foot-5, he doesn’t use his body enough to make a difference in the game. The Maple Leafs should consider trading him early on this season and find a team willing to unload a defenseman. If it means a Marlies’ prospect has to be sent packing in the deal, so be it. Toronto would be better off with Engvall out, and Robertson in as they look to build some momentum this season.

Explore everything hockey with THW’s Hockeypedia pages.

The Hockey Writers HockeyPedia 800x120