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Before free agency, the New York Rangers requested Jacob Trouba’s 15-team no-trade list, and the Toronto Maple Leafs have already been connected to the blueliner.

After fellow insider Chris Johnston published his most recent “Trade Big Board” over the same outlet on June 26, Arthur Staple of The Athletic reported the Rangers’ request on June 27.

Regarding Trouba’s availability, Johnston ranked him as the No. 14 best player available for trade. “With his no-movement clause set to convert to a 15-team no-trade clause on July 1 and the Rangers believed to be looking at moving a defenseman, Trouba could be the odd man out,” Johnston wrote.

Then, on June 27, Staple and Peter Baugh suggested that Trouba would be best served by a trade to the Maple Leafs rather than the Rangers.

“Teams are always drawn to big, right-shot defensemen like Trouba.” The Maple Leafs will be wary of signing anyone over the salary cap, but if they can’t sign Chris Tanev, they might be intrigued. They wrote, “They have a need on the right side.

Naturally, there’s the question of whether Trouba would agree to a trade to Toronto and unlock it by removing the Leasf from his no-trade list. Trouba might be reluctant to relocate north of the border to play for a team in Canada, according to popular belief.

Furthermore, it remains to be seen if Trouba would be interested in entering the Canadian market. He might have all seven teams from north of the border on his no-trade list. Winnipeg is definitely there, Staple and Baugh wrote.

What Makes Jacob Trouba Tradeable?
Trouba, the captain of the Rangers, had his share of highs and lows in the 2023–24 campaign. The blueliner recently finished with 22 points from 69 regular-season games, including 3 goals and 19 assists. Throughout 16 postseason games, he added 1 goal and 6 assists.

In the conference finals, the Florida Panthers defeated the Rangers 4-2 and went on to win the Stanley Cup.

Trouba’s five-year, $56 million contract is up in two years. Trouba’s no-move clause becomes a 15-team no-trade list as of July 1. Trouba will be able to use it to veto any trade to a team on that list.

The Rangers would eliminate Trouba’s substantial $8 million salary from their 2024–25 books by trading him. In June 2019, the Rangers finalized a trade with the Winnipeg Jets to acquire Trouba. In August 2022, he was named captain by New York.

When describing Trouba, Johnston brought up his physical defensive presence and strong game. He included it because he thought it might be a future surplus asset for the Rangers.

“The right-shot defender is renowned for his punishing bodychecks that finish opponents off. He plays a strong, physical style of defense.” Although he just had a challenging postseason, most teams would consider him an upgrade, according to Johnston.

“Trouba might be a luxury at his cap hit in New York, where they also have Adam Fox and Braden Schneider on the right side.”

Maple Leafs Seek to Enhance the Defense Corps
The Leafs-Trouba match makes sense in light of the most recent information regarding the kind of player Toronto is pursuing.

As per the June 19 report by David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period, the Leafs intend to bolster their blueline this off-season by adding some size.

Pagnotta specifically named Nikita Zadorov of the Vancouver Canucks and Colton Parayko of the St. Louis Blues. While the latter can only be acquired through trade, the former is anticipated to become free agent on July 1st (if at all).

According to PuckPedia, the Maple Leafs will have $19.7 million in cap space when the offseason begins. But Toronto’s roster is limited to four contract defensemen. Only Timothy Liljegren will be eligible for restricted free agency among the pending free agents; the other six will become unrestricted FA.

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