The Toronto Maple Leafs have added a key defenseman by acquiring Jake Muzzin from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for forward Carl Grundstrom, the rights to Sean Durzi and Toronto’s first-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.
This trade makes Toronto one of the most complete teams in the league. Muzzin brings experience playing 50 total playoff games and a Stanley Cup win in 2014. He could be the missing piece of a puzzle that can help the Maple Leafs go deep into the playoffs.
Norris Trophy candidate Morgan Rielly will most likely pair with Muzzin as Ron Hainsey will move down in the defensive lineup.
Muzzin has 21 points with four goals and 17 assists this season. He is currently signed through next season with a $4 million salary.
The Kings are now focusing on their future by adding Grundstrom and Durzi. Both players have yet to make their NHL debuts. Grundstrom played in the American Hockey League for the Toronto Marlies scoring 29 points in 42 games. Durzi was a 2018 second-round pick that currently has 28 points in 26 games in the Ontario Hockey League.
“We feel this trade was necessary for the future of the organization,” according to Kings general manager Rob Blake “Moving Jake was not easy as he has been a key player for us and a significant part of our most historic and memorable achievements. We are grateful for his contributions to the Kings and we wish him the best of luck in the future.”
The Kings are now in a tanking mode as they focus on their future. The Maple Leafs proved that they are in a win-now mentality by acquiring Muzzin.
Photo credit to Alex Gallardo of AP