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February 26, 2014 | 11:30am ET
Reimer aware trade is possible

As the season progresses, it's becoming more and more evident that the Toronto Maple Leafs plan on letting goalie Jonathan Bernier start the bulk of the team's remaining games.

With Bernier quietly settling into the team's No. 1 role, netminder James Reimer seems to have found himself on the outside looking in.

"Obviously, for me personally, it's been an interesting year," Reimer told TSN on Tuesday. "There are thoughts that come into your mind.

"Any time you go from playing a lot of games to not, it's a hard pill to swallow. You want to play, you want to be the guy, and you want to give your team the best chance to win."

Reimer's name has popped up in trade rumors since the Leafs acquired Bernier last summer. Teams have inquired about his availability, but it's unclear if the team will deal him by the March 5 trade deadline.

The 25-year-old Manitoba native feels he's proven he can handle the starter's role in the NHL, and wants the opportunity to reclaim that title.

"As far as I'm concerned, I don't think it's up for debate," Reimer said. "I think I've had a couple of solid years where I've played really well."

While Toronto is the place he'd like to be, Reimer's fully aware that a trade is a possibility.

Reimer is in the final year of his current contract and is set to become a restricted free agent July 1. If the Leafs do not deal him by the deadline, they could explore a trade in the off-season.

"This is definitely a place I've dreamed of playing my whole career," he said. "Who knows what's going to happen on the horizon. Right now, I don't know if I want to talk about it too much."

In 24 games with the Leafs so far this season, Reimer has posted a 10-6-1 record with a 3.25 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage.

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