It took only a couple of days for newcomer general manager (GM) Brad Treliving to change the Toronto Maple Leafs’ roster. He added three forwards (Tyler Bertuzzi, Max Domi, and Ryan Reaves) to the team. He also brought in defenseman John Klingberg.

Now it’s a fair question to wonder what these players will bring to the team. The roster and even the team’s identity have undergone a major transformation. But what will it be and become?

In short, the goal was to build a tougher, more competitive Maple Leafs team. Did it happen?

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What Do the Newcomers Bring to the Team?

Below, I’ll list seven expectations for these newcomers.

#1) Expect the Forwards to Add Grit and Toughness

Fans should expect the playing styles of Bertuzzi and Domi to inject a dose of grit and physicality into the Maple Leafs’ game. Expect Reaves to act as the team’s security guard. GM Treliving has tried to make it tougher for opposing teams to play against his team.

Max Domi, now with the Maple Leafs

Expect all the talented forwards, even a rookie like Matthew Knies to be better protected when they’re on the ice.

#2) Expect Klingberg to Add Offensive on the Defense

With Klingberg, there is a potential for increased offensive production from the defence. If Klingberg can find his groove again, he’ll contribute effectively from the blue line. He has a potentially strong partnership with Jake McCabe. If it works, the twosome will be a critical addition to the team’s success next season.

#3) Expect Bertuzzi and Domi to Provide Secondary Scoring

One key missing piece of the playoff puzzle was the team’s secondary scoring. Both Bertuzzi and Domi can score. And, with them, the Maple Leafs have higher hopes for secondary scoring outside of the Core Four.

Both Bertuzzi and Domi should be given chances to show their skills in top-six roles. Fans should expect both players to have a chance to fill in on the two top lines. Domi might take over the Swiss Army knife aspect that Alex Kerfoot brought to the team over the past few seasons. It could be that Domi will fill the third-line center’s role.

#4) Expect Bertuzzi to Have a Career Season

Perhaps the biggest beneficiary of playing time will be Bertuzzi. He was good with the Detroit Red Wings, but he’s never played with the likes of Auston Matthews or Mitch Marner. If that’s his deployment, watch out.

The Toronto Maple Leafs brought in Tyler Bertuzzi, Max Domi, John Klingberg, and Ryan Reaves. What should fans expect?
Tyler Bertuzzi, now with the Maple Leafs

It might be that Bertuzzi will have a sensational season. He could be the perfect complement to the dynamic first line. He’d also bring an element to the physicality of the unit. There’s a chance that Bertuzzi could be a point-a-game player. In 2020-21, in 68 games he scored 30 goals and added 32 assists (for 62 points). So, he can score.

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#5) Expect Domi and Klingberg to Reach 50 Points

Perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself, but the opportunity for this team to be high-scoring is there. Both Domi and Klingberg could pick up 50 points. For Klingberg, it could depend upon how much time he gets on the power-play. That said, both will add depth and firepower to the team’s offence.

#6) Expect Reaves to Become an Intimidation Factor

Although he might not see extensive ice time, Reaves will be his physical self. He’s also expected to become a presence in the locker room and bring the team leadership. His role might be limited, but his impact could be significant, especially during the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

#7) Expect the Team to Compete for the Stanley Cup

Once again, the Maple Leafs should be a Stanley Cup contender this season. Still, many questions surround the team. That said, the newcomers should bring the kind of combined skills that should allow the team to compete for the ultimate prize – the Stanley Cup.

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