May 30, 2019 | 5:20pm ET
TheFourthPeriod.com

MAPLE LEAFS TRYING TO TRADE ZAITSEV

 
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Nikita Zaitsev, defenceman

 

The Toronto Maple Leafs and defenceman Nikita Zaitsev have come to an agreement to work together to try to facilitate a trade, according to multiple reports.

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman first reported the news on Thursday afternoon, indicating the two sides are looking to give the blueliner a “fresh start.”

Zaitsev, 27, has five-years remaining on his contract, which comes with a $4.5 million salary cap hit and a 10-team no-trade list.

TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie reported it was Zaitsev who initiated the request, citing personal reasons. McKenzie also mentioned the Leafs might not be “in a salary cap position to retain much, if any, salary.”

Leafs GM Kyle Dubas briefly explored the trade market on Zaitsev during the season, but will certainly escalate his attempts in the coming weeks.

McKenzie reported that since news broke of Zaitsev’s availability, more teams have inquired about his services.