5 Reasons Why Steven Stamkos Won’t Be Joining The Toronto Maple Leafs In 2016

5 Reasons Why Steven Stamkos Won't Be Joining The Toronto Maple Leafs In 2016

Steven Stamkos
Kim Klement-USA Today Sports

Steven Stamkos will not be eligible to leave the Tampa Bay Lightning for another two years, but rumors are already circulating there may be mutual interest with his hometown Toronto Maple Leafs. The speculation should end right now as there is absolutely no reason for one of the league’s elite snipers to bolt one of the East’s best teams for one that has been the epitome of ineptitude.

5. Steve Yzerman at the hlem

Steve Yzerman
Jeff Griffith-USA TODAY Sports

5. Steve Yzerman at the helm

Steve Yzerman
Jeff Griffith-USA TODAY Sports

Despite Yzerman trading away Stamkos' former linemate, Martin St. Louis, the exec has committed to building this team around his superstar by drafting playmaker Jonathan Drouin and adding the gritty Ryan Callahan,

4. The Randy Carlyle Situation

Randy Carlyle
John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

4. The Randy Carlyle Situation

Randy Carlyle
John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

It’s essentially a guarantee Randy Carlyle will be gone if and when Stamkos reaches free agency, but the way the Leafs have managed their head coach should be enough to scare the forward away. After an epic collapse down the stretch, it looked like the Leafs’ new front office would fire Carlyle. This wasn't the case as Carlyle was retained, and the Leafs’ cycle of ineptitude now continues.

3. David Clarkson's Contract

Clarkson
Tom Szczerbowski-USA Today Sports

3. David Clarkson's Contract

Clarkson
Tom Szczerbowski-USA Today Sports

David Clarkson is a fourth-liner who makes over $5 million per season, a contract no team would touch and one that the Leafs cannot move. Having this cap hit hinders their ability to sign any free agent, especially one like Stamkos who will command around $10 million annually.

2. Phil Kessel's Presence

Phil Kessel
John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

2. Phil Kessel's Presence

Phil Kessel
John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

The Leafs’ current franchise player Phil Kessel is not only signed long-term, but like Stamkos, he is a shoot-first sniper. Having two players who play nearly identical styles would be redundant and prevent the Leafs from addressing other areas of need. Playing together would require one of them to change their style, which would surely make them less effective.

1. Why leave a Perfect Situation?

Steven Stamkos
Kim Klement-USA Today Sports

1. Why leave a Perfect Situation?

Steven Stamkos
Kim Klement-USA Today Sports

Playing on a great team is only the tip of the iceberg. Tampa is a great low-key market that is the polar opposite of the pressure cooker that is Toronto. The year-round warm weather and plethora of golf courses and beaches make it a paradise for hockey players. The lack of state income taxes in Florida is icing on the cake, as the Lightning surely have the advantage in keeping Stamkos by the Bay.

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