NHL Trade Scenarios: Ryan Getzlaf Would be a Perfect fit for Toronto Maple Leafs

By Jon Reid

55 days.

That’s when the Toronto Maple Leafs are scheduled to open the 2012-2013 regular season against the Montreal Canadiens at the Air Canada Center.

That also happens to be a rather large time frame–one in which Brian Burke could certainly engineer a major deal to fill Toronto’s gaping hole at the center position. There will be several NHL trade scenarios in coming days, but this is one of the more interesting.

After breaking down Toronto’s dilemma of having a plethora of talented wingers yesterday, I figured that now would be the time to outline the case for making a splash and bringing Ryan Getzlaf to Toronto as soon as possible.

For starters, there’s the obvious: Ryan Getzlaf is a premier, top-tier, first-line center, something that Toronto has sorely lacked since Mats Sundin headed west.

Then there’s the fact that Getzlaf also happens to be 6’4″ and 225 pounds, making him the type of big player that head coach Randy Carlyle and GM Brian Burke covet.

At 27 years old, Getzlaf would bring experience and leadership to the table as well, yet he’s still just only hitting his prime.

His familiarity with Carlyle and Burke could not only serve as a selling point to keep Getzlaf here long term, but it would also ensure Getzlaf’s transition would be much easier than most, as he knows the system that Carlyle likes to play.

Finally, if the Leafs could go out and pull the trigger on a deal to bring the Regina, Saskatchewan native to Toronto, it would also give Burke one more piece of leverage in potentially signing Getzlaf’s fellow Duck and linemate, Corey Perry, when he hits free agency next July 1st.

With a dynamic group of talented wingers, a new coach with a Stanley Cup to his name, the true first line center that they have so desperately needed and an up-and-coming group of young defensemen, Toronto would become a near shoe-in playoff team and potential Stanley Cup contender within two or three seasons.

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