4 Players Toronto Maple Leafs Could Trade During NHL Draft

BOSTON, MA - APRIL 11:  Nikita Zaitsev #22 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates with the puck in Game One of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Boston Bruins the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 11, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game One | Adam Glanzman

The NHL Draft is near with almost every team needing to unload some cap space in order to re-sign crucial players to their roster. The Toronto Maple Leafs are no exception, as they hope to bring back Mitch Marner. Thankfully, there are few expandable players on their roster they could unload to ensure some extra cap space.

4. Patrick Marleau

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 14:  Patrick Marleau #12 of the Toronto Maple Leafs celebrates with teammates on the bench after scoring a second-period goal against the Vegas Golden Knights during their game at T-Mobile Arena on February 14, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Toronto Maple Leafs v Vegas Golden Knights | Ethan Miller

Patrick Marleau moved his family to Toronto last summer and signed a two-year deal worth $6 million per year to play for the Leafs, and now he may have to move once again this summer. The Leafs will need to clear up cap space and Marleau may be the sacrifice for the team.

3. Nazem Kadri

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 16:  Nazem Kadri #43 of the Toronto Maple Leafs in action during the first period of the NHL game against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena on February 16, 2019 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Toronto Maple Leafs v Arizona Coyotes | Christian Petersen

Nazem Kadri cost the Maple Leafs big when he was suspended during the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs against Boston. Now, Kadri is expected to be dealt away to free up cap space for the team's younger talent.

2. Kasperi Kapanen

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - APRIL 23: Kasperi Kapanen #24 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates against the Boston Bruins during the second period of Game Seven of the Eastern Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 23, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game Seven | Maddie Meyer

Kasperi Kapanen is also a restricted free agent this summer, but he will not be prioritized with Mitch Marner needing a new contract as well. Kapanen's rights could be traded away in return for a draft pick or even a player still on his rookie deal who could make the roster this year.

1. Nikita Zaitsev

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 16:  Nikita Zaitsev #22 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates with the puck during the first period of the NHL game against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena on February 16, 2019 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Toronto Maple Leafs v Arizona Coyotes | Christian Petersen

Nikita Zaitsev reportedly requested a trade from Toronto earlier this offseason, and has had his name linked to many teams ever since. It is highly likely that Zaitsev gets traded this offseason, and during the draft makes the most sense.