Speculation: Should we entertain the idea of Toronto trading Auston Matthews

I'd like to prep this by saying this is not my personal speculation, but rather a report on a post written by Rob Vollman of ESPN. So put down the pitchforks Leafs nation, don't shoot the messenger.

Vollman posted on ESPN "The case for trading Auston Matthews," where he attempts to reason with the idea of trading away the 20-year old franchise player.

In it he points out the difficulty of managing a player who will likely receive 12+ million dollars next July. Using the Oilers as an example, he pointed out them having to buy out Benoit Pouliot, and trade away Jordan Eberle. If Toronto believes they can better spend that money elsewhere, why wouldn't they?

Vollman goes on and points out the Leafs need of defense. Taking Matthews out of the equation, the Leafs still have future top-line talent in Mitch Marner and William Nylander, with support from players like Patrick Marleau and James Van Riemsdyk. So if you were to take out Auston Matthews to give your top defensive pairing a new face, like an Erik Karlsson or Oliver Ekman-Larsson the gains might outweigh the losses.

He concludes by explaining the massive return one could get for a player of Matthews' caliber. While it is true you could likely get the moon for a franchise center like Matthews, he only points out one instance in recent history where the team that traded the franchise player won the trade (Eric Lindros to Philadelphia).

Vollman is likely the most hated man in Toronto at the moment, but he does make some decent points. What are your thoughts on this comment below?

If you'd like to see the original article, click here.

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