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Toronto Maple Leafs hot rumor: Noah Hanifen

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The Toronto Maple Leafs is the destination for any player who might be available.

Damn Louise! There was even a rumor about the Toronto Maple Leafs and Scott Lawton last week.

Scott Lawton?

There is exactly one city in the NHL that can make a huge fuss about Scott Freaking Laughton and you live there.

But what about the really important player? Or a rumor that might actually happen (OK, laughter can happen, but shouldn’t, anyway, who really cares?).

Noé Hanifen He is the NHL’s number one defenseman who, if he’s not a star, is still very good. He’s probably the Leafs’ best point guard, depending on what Morgan Rielly is running for.

He hails from the Calgary Flames and is well known to Leafs new general manager Brad Treliving. Hanifin was also some people’s favorite when drafting Mitch Marner because the Leafs were right, leaving Hanifin to the Hurricanes and Marner’s choice.

In the past, Karolina might have wanted to take on Zack Verinski or Mikko Rantanen, but that’s a different article.

Toronto Maple Leafs hot rumor: Noah Hanifen

Hanifin was traded to Calgary as part of the Dougie Hamilton trade, but he’s nowhere near as good as Dougie Hamilton.

Still, he’s a decent player.

Hanifen is 26, 6’3, 210. He’s a big boy, but not very defensive. Hanifen is a mobile defensive player who hasn’t scored 10 goals or scored 50 points yet.

On the Leafs, he’s probably 26, so he might still have some upside, but he’s not the first linebacker the Leafs want out.

I mean, it’s not impossible for him to become one, but most guys are 26 – you don’t have many Jose Bautistas in this world (he became MVP/Borderline Hall of Famer at 27 and before that wasn’t normal).

Hanifin is probably as good as Morgan Rielly. He’s never (as far as I know) been through a period where he was as good as Morgan Rielly’s heyday in 2018-19, or even as good as Rielly this spring (Rielly was so good that he’s almost as young as AHL player Luke Schenn’s career).

Noah Hanifen is a good player who can help the Toronto Maple Leafs. Not the kind of player you would trade with, William Nylander. He’s not young or has a ceiling high enough for that.

If you can pick him up in the first round and some B-class candidates, that’s a good deal. Otherwise, it’s a tough pass, because he’s a bit overrated, not very good defensively and is at an age where he shouldn’t be improving.

He’s worth well at $5 million this year, but he’s a great candidate for overpaid as he approaches his 30s. The Toronto Maple Leafs should try to get it, but only at a reasonable cost.

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