by Stan Smith

[Note from the Old Prof: Stan and I are usually in agreement, but there are times we disagree. This is one of them. This post shows differences in our thinking about the topic discussed. Obviously, we both think it’s good for everyone who cares about a topic to share widely all the insights about it. This is Stan’s. Enjoy. The Old Prof (Jim Parsons, Sr.)]

Related: Marner Might Be the Odd Man Out With Maple Leafs’ Core Four

Stan’s Argument

In a recent article by the Old Prof (see just above) discussing the potential trade between Mitch Marner and William Nylander, I’d like to provide a counterpoint to some of the arguments made:

Point One: Gun To The Head

The Old Prof criticizes Marner’s contract negotiations, labelling them as a “gun to the head” approach. However, it’s important to note that Nylander’s previous contract negotiations involved a lengthy holdout, which could be seen as more impactful. Marner, on the other hand, signed his contract on the day the training camp began. That showed a willingness to join the team promptly.

Mitch Marner, Maple Leafs

Point Two: Contracts and Concerns

While the Old Prof highlights the $4 million difference in contracts between Marner and Nylander, he fails to mention that Nylander’s deal expires earlier. Nylander is likely to demand a significant raise in his next contract, reducing the savings the Maple Leafs would gain by trading Marner. Additionally, comparing their production and salaries, Marner’s performance justifies a raise, but Nylander’s demands could also increase in the future.

Point Three: Playoff Performance

The notion that Marner is not a playoff performer is a common misconception. While he has struggled at times, he has an impressive career playoff record, outscoring his teammates and contributing significantly to the team’s success. It’s important to consider the larger picture rather than solely focusing on individual games or series.

Point Four: Who Would The Maple Leafs Be Better Off Keeping?

Determining whether the Maple Leafs should trade Marner or Nylander requires careful consideration of various factors, including potential returns. Any trade should aim to improve the team’s current state, and the value received in exchange for the player traded is crucial. While both Marner and Nylander have their strengths and weaknesses, the ultimate goal should be to make the team better overall.

William Nylander, Maple Leafs Rookie Card


While the Old Prof presents an argument for potentially trading Marner over Nylander, it’s important to consider the counterpoints discussed. The decision should be based on a comprehensive evaluation of the team’s needs, potential returns, and the long-term impact on the Maple Leafs’ success.

Ultimately, any trade should be made with the intention of improving the team’s chances of winning in the present and future.

[Thanks to Stan for adding his insights into my previous work. As I noted, we usually agree. However, when we don’t it’s good to hear another side.]

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