NHL Rumors: 3 Potential Trade Destinations for Sharks' Brent Burns

The San Jose Sharks are a team to keep an eye on this offseason as their expected to make some major changes to their roster. More specifically, look for the Sharks to gauge the trade market on their expensive defensemen and for this segment we zone in on right-hander Brent Burns. Let's take a look at three teams who could end up trading for Burns this summer:

Toronto Maple Leafs

Burns is from the area and there could be a fit here with the Maple Leafs. Toronto would love to get their hands on a right-handed puck-moving defenseman, however with the Barrie, ON native is signed for three more seasons at $8 million on the cap, a figure that may scare away some teams including the Leafs. If the Sharks retained half of his salary, there's potential here as the two teams have struck deals in the past. Burns submits a three-team trade list every offseason and with his family in the area, perhaps Toronto is one destination that makes the list. While he'll turn 38 next season, the goofy defenseman is in fantastic shape and can still produce with the best of them, recording 54 points in 82 games this season.

Montreal Canadiens

The Canadiens are an absolute wild card this summer as the team could basically head in any direction they choose. From selling off draft picks for NHL ready talent, to landing a blockbuster piece or two,, general manager Kent Hughes will have some tricks up his sleeve. Considering how much Burns and his family love the San Jose area, moving north for the winter may be a tough sell. While the Canadiens would likely have some interest, it's expected they will pursue Kris Letang more on the open market instead of trading assets for a player like Burns.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Speaking of Letang, the Penguins are going to be in tough to re-sign their veteran blueliner as the team has a number of players hitting free agency. Perhaps if Letang does indeed head to Montreal, management looks at a player like Burns to fill in. The two play a very similar style and Sidney Crosby is a huge fan of Burns', so expect to see the Penguins involved if Burns hits the trade market. San Jose is going to have to retain some salary in any deal, but that just means the pot gets sweeter on the return. A Sharks and Penguins summer blockbuster? Some dominoes will have to fall first, but it's certainly a possibility.

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