Well, it was already in the cards. Now, if an NHL executive is right, Dion Phaneuf wants to be traded. Steve Simmons of The Toronto Sun and TSN, said that an NHL executive has claimed that Phanuef wants “out of that nut house in Toronto.”
Simmons goes on to say that Phaneuf has never said anything publicly about wanting out. Why would he? If a player says he wants out of a team, it hurts his trade value. With Phanuef’s contract already bringing down his trade value, it would be lunacy to publicly announce that he wants to be traded. If the Leafs can’t get a good return in a deal, they will be more inclined to keep him, at least for now.
Where Will He Go?
We all know about the talks the Maple Leafs had with the Detroit Red Wings at the Trade Deadline before Detroit decided to go with the cheaper Marek Zidlicky. Will they be able to return to those talks? The Red Wings certainly have the prospect depth that the Leafs could mine from. Maybe if Detroit has soured on Anthony Mantha, they could include him in the deal.
The Los Angeles Kings have also been long-rumored to be interested. However, the cap situation is complicated and the deal would have to be worked out very carefully.
If Phaneuf does indeed want out, the Maple Leafs should make every effort to move him as soon as possible. A rebuild is already bad, at least in the form of results. We don’t want to see it get messy. Being the captain of the team, it would set a bad example for the Leafs young players. That’s the last thing a rebuilding team wants.