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The 15 Best Trades in Modern Toronto Maple Leafs History

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03-13-2013, 05:06 PM
  #1
the1jasontaylor
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The 15 Best Trades in Modern Toronto Maple Leafs History

Hello all,

I recently shared a list of the 25 Worst Trades in Maple Leafs History (posted here).

I decided to try for some karmic balance, and I took a stab at the Best Leafs trades as well. While the list isn't quite as deep (Best 15 vs. Worst 25), it was still a fun trip down memory lane.

Here are the individual sections for anyone who might be interested:
Introduction, #11-15, #6-10, and #1-5.

Any feedback, either positive or negative, is more than welcome. I hope you enjoy my take, I'd be happy to hear yours as well.

I'm planning to experiment with similar Best/Worst lists for other NHL franchises, likely beginning with the Montreal Canadiens and then moving on to either other Original Six teams or the other Canadian franchises.

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03-13-2013, 05:39 PM
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reckoning
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Nice work. I enjoyed reading that, and look forward to anything similar you write for other teams. I personally would've put the Gilmour trade at #1, as I think that was the pivotal deal that finally turned things around for the franchise.

Of course, the best Toronto trade of all-time was getting Ted Kennedy from Montreal for Frank Eddolls.

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03-13-2013, 06:13 PM
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Killion
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Ya, I echo reckonings sentiments & opinion, Kennedy trade, but of course not exactly modern era. Very well documented & written, great pictures. As a Leafs fan since the early 60's & general observer, Id say you pretty much nailed it....

oh, and Welcome to hfBoards!

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03-13-2013, 07:08 PM
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kmad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reckoning View Post
Of course, the best Toronto trade of all-time was getting Ted Kennedy from Montreal for Frank Eddolls.
not Turk Broda for cash?

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03-13-2013, 08:08 PM
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reckoning
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Originally Posted by Jagorim Jarg View Post
not Turk Broda for cash?
Forgot about that one, but I always thought of cash trades as more similar to a free agent signing than a trade.

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03-13-2013, 09:27 PM
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Stephen
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It's a shame that the Bryan Berard for Felix Potvin deal didn't have the opportunity to pan out as one of the greatest steals in franchise history. Potvin was in rapid decline and Berard just had all the tools...

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03-19-2013, 01:20 PM
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the1jasontaylor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reckoning View Post
Nice work. I enjoyed reading that, and look forward to anything similar you write for other teams. I personally would've put the Gilmour trade at #1, as I think that was the pivotal deal that finally turned things around for the franchise.

Of course, the best Toronto trade of all-time was getting Ted Kennedy from Montreal for Frank Eddolls.
Thanks for the feedback! I assumed a lot of people would feel the same about Gilmour, and that trade did single-handedly bring the franchise back to a respectability it hadn't had since Sittler was dealt. But Sundin was such a good player over a very long period of time. Still, it's nice to be able to even have that debate; some other franchises don't even have ONE trade with that kind of impact, never mind two.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Killion View Post
Ya, I echo reckonings sentiments & opinion, Kennedy trade, but of course not exactly modern era. Very well documented & written, great pictures. As a Leafs fan since the early 60's & general observer, Id say you pretty much nailed it....

oh, and Welcome to hfBoards!
Many thanks! I considered including some Original Six trades, but I almost consider pre-1967 NHL hockey to be a different sport, never mind a different era. It's tough to look back at the six-team league and reconcile it with the post-expansion era.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen View Post
It's a shame that the Bryan Berard for Felix Potvin deal didn't have the opportunity to pan out as one of the greatest steals in franchise history. Potvin was in rapid decline and Berard just had all the tools...
That injury stole so much momentum from the Leafs. They were turning into a VERY fun-to-watch run-and-gun team. Berard combining with McCabe and Kaberle on the blueline to feed pucks to Sullivan, Sundin and Mogilny would've made the team a lot more exciting (and successful).

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03-20-2013, 04:03 AM
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BrimStone64
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Originally Posted by the1jasontaylor View Post
Hello all,

I recently shared a list of the 25 Worst Trades in Maple Leafs History (posted here).

I decided to try for some karmic balance, and I took a stab at the Best Leafs trades as well. While the list isn't quite as deep (Best 15 vs. Worst 25), it was still a fun trip down memory lane.

Here are the individual sections for anyone who might be interested:
Introduction, #11-15, #6-10, and #1-5.

Any feedback, either positive or negative, is more than welcome. I hope you enjoy my take, I'd be happy to hear yours as well.

I'm planning to experiment with similar Best/Worst lists for other NHL franchises, likely beginning with the Montreal Canadiens and then moving on to either other Original Six teams or the other Canadian franchises.
Must be mistakes in there because on Fuhr trade Montreal beat Buffalo out of playoffs in 1993. Not by Boston in first round. I'm quite sure because '93 was our last Cup. I can remember Carbonneau scoring in overtime against Fuhr.

It was '82 not '81 Canucks went to Finals. Quite sure because that was the white towel waving spring. Toronto lost lot of playoff grit and heart in Williams trade. No doubt inspired by Roger Neilson who seen Tiger in that role in remarkable playoff series during 1970s. Upset of Islanders in '78 and famous battles with Flyers in mid-'70s. Wouldn't be in my top Leafs trade.

Little bit similar to Wendel Clark trade. Team was never the same after that, traded their heart. Gave up a lot in toughness and playoff grit.

I'm don't know Leafs much but to me best trade all time I would say be Gilmour trade. That was ridiculously lopsided. In top 5 I would put Plante trade. A great season, then flip him for Turnbull was a steal. Kicker was he really matured Parent. Leafs dealt Parent before they knew what they had but that was a separte trade.


Last edited by BrimStone64: 03-20-2013 at 04:11 AM.
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03-20-2013, 08:50 AM
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the1jasontaylor
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Must be mistakes in there because on Fuhr trade Montreal beat Buffalo out of playoffs in 1993. Not by Boston in first round. I'm quite sure because '93 was our last Cup. I can remember Carbonneau scoring in overtime against Fuhr.
Good catch, that shows the risks of relying on Wikipedia for quick fact-checking. I looked again, and you're right: the Sabres were beaten by Montreal in the second round. I've corrected that in my article.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats86 View Post
It was '82 not '81 Canucks went to Finals. Quite sure because that was the white towel waving spring. Toronto lost lot of playoff grit and heart in Williams trade. No doubt inspired by Roger Neilson who seen Tiger in that role in remarkable playoff series during 1970s. Upset of Islanders in '78 and famous battles with Flyers in mid-'70s. Wouldn't be in my top Leafs trade.

Little bit similar to Wendel Clark trade. Team was never the same after that, traded their heart. Gave up a lot in toughness and playoff grit.
This one was strictly a typo; thanks for pointing it out. Corrected. No matter how heart-and-soul a player may be, the most successful NHL teams are the ones that acquire assets at low points and trade them away before their value diminishes. Williams' value had peaked, while Vaive was barely getting started (never mind Derlago). Trading Tiger Williams set off a huge chain of trades that impacted the Leafs for 20+ years: Williams - Vaive - Olczyk - Ellett - McCauley/Smith/Sullivan. Meanwhile, Williams was dealt for Rob McLanahan, and the trade became a dead-end for Vancouver within a few years. Never mind the fact that Vaive scored 50+ goals three times; the only players to do that for Vancouver were Bure (3x) and Mogilny (1x). And it is the same with Clark, no matter how much heart he provided, he couldn't drive the team to greater levels of success. Sundin WAS the core of the Leafs for nearly 15 years, and got them to the conference finals twice. Tough trades to swallow as a fan, but 100% worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats86 View Post
I'm don't know Leafs much but to me best trade all time I would say be Gilmour trade. That was ridiculously lopsided. In top 5 I would put Plante trade. A great season, then flip him for Turnbull was a steal. Kicker was he really matured Parent. Leafs dealt Parent before they knew what they had but that was a separte trade.
I completely get your point about the Gilmour trade. It was lopsided, and gave the Leafs two key components (Gilmour and Macoun) at virtually no cost while turning the franchise from a laughing stock into a legitimate playoff threat. But I still feel Gilmour's impact was just too short-lived to put that deal above the Sundin trade. And I WISH the Leafs had held on to Parent; you put him in net for the '78 Leafs instead of Palmateer and that team MIGHT have been good enough to beat the Canadiens and Bruins that year.

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03-20-2013, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by the1jasontaylor View Post
Good catch, that shows the risks of relying on Wikipedia for quick fact-checking. I looked again, and you're right: the Sabres were beaten by Montreal in the second round. I've corrected that in my article.


This one was strictly a typo; thanks for pointing it out. Corrected. No matter how heart-and-soul a player may be, the most successful NHL teams are the ones that acquire assets at low points and trade them away before their value diminishes. Williams' value had peaked, while Vaive was barely getting started (never mind Derlago). Trading Tiger Williams set off a huge chain of trades that impacted the Leafs for 20+ years: Williams - Vaive - Olczyk - Ellett - McCauley/Smith/Sullivan. Meanwhile, Williams was dealt for Rob McLanahan, and the trade became a dead-end for Vancouver within a few years. Never mind the fact that Vaive scored 50+ goals three times; the only players to do that for Vancouver were Bure (3x) and Mogilny (1x). And it is the same with Clark, no matter how much heart he provided, he couldn't drive the team to greater levels of success. Sundin WAS the core of the Leafs for nearly 15 years, and got them to the conference finals twice. Tough trades to swallow as a fan, but 100% worth it.


I completely get your point about the Gilmour trade. It was lopsided, and gave the Leafs two key components (Gilmour and Macoun) at virtually no cost while turning the franchise from a laughing stock into a legitimate playoff threat. But I still feel Gilmour's impact was just too short-lived to put that deal above the Sundin trade. And I WISH the Leafs had held on to Parent; you put him in net for the '78 Leafs instead of Palmateer and that team MIGHT have been good enough to beat the Canadiens and Bruins that year.
Sundin has the points on paper but players like that don't have the will to win. Similar to a Joe Thornton or Pierre Turgeon. Can't build a cup winning team around them. The early '90s Leafs were a Cup contender, only a blown Kerry Fraser call on Gretzky from a cup. After they traded their heart never came close

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03-22-2013, 06:31 AM
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tony d
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Yeah, the Gilmour trade should have been #1. He did much more for the Leafs than Sundin.

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03-28-2013, 06:17 AM
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With the Iginla trade shows he moved to win a Cup. Bourque did similar thing. I remember Sundin being in their position a few years ago but refused to waive his no-trade clause. See the cup didn't mean much to him. Things like that is why i said last week Sundin never had the will to win.

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