If Maple Leafs want to trade for Islanders Scott Mayfield then have it

Toronto Maple Leafs v New York Islanders
Toronto Maple Leafs v New York Islanders / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

With the way the season is going for the New York Islanders, they aren't going to make the playoffs. They're 16 points out right now. That's a huge gap to overcome. As such other teams and their fanbases are looking to the Islanders roster to see who they can pluck to bolster their own squads.

According to Editor in Leaf, the Toronto Maple Leafs should be looking to acquire defenseman Scott Mayfield from the Isles. And yeah, by all means, go for it.

New York Islanders: If Maple Leafs want Mayfield they can have him

That sounds like I don't like Scott Mayfield, which isn't the case. He's a good bottom pair shutdown defenseman. He's good in his own end, he's good on the PK, and he's not bad at breaking up plays on the blueline. But for all his strengths he has his weaknesses.

His lack of discipline is a problem for the Islanders. His 40 PIM this season rank him eleventh for time spent in the penalty box in the entire league. A majority of those minutes are unforced, meaning they come away from the play or were entirely unnecessary.

Mayfield is also a liability when it comes to exiting the zone. The veteran righty has a penchant for making rush passes out of the D-zone that are easily picked off by opponents, resulting in the puck coming back in the Isles end. See this example from Tuesday's loss in Detroit.

Not to mention how frequently some of these passes end up as icing. It's a problem for the New York Islanders who need to be able to exit the zone cleanly when they eventually get control of the puck. Because controlling the puck isn't something the Isles do a lot. The Isles hold the 6th worst CF in the NHL at 46.38%

With the injury to Ryan Pulock, Mayfield has been cast as a top-pair defenseman. Meaning a brighter light is shone on Mayfield's deficiencies.

If the season is truly lost and the Toronto Maple Leafs come calling for Mayfield, Lou Lamoriello should absolutely make a deal. Moving Mayfield would allow Grant Hutton to step up to the NHL. Signed out of college, Hutton is ready for the next step in his hockey career. Hutton being ready doesn't make Mayfield expendable, but if Mayfield were to be traded Hutton could step up.

The Return

What they get back is the real question. Again, Mayfield is a decent bottom pair defenseman and he's got a hell of a contract. That $1.45 million cap hit this year and next is the type of deal any team wants on their books.

Maybe the Leafs can entice the Isles into taking draft picks? The 2022 draft is supposed to be fairly deep so getting the Leafs second-rounder this year would be good and maybe a latter-round pick next year. Draft picks aren't ideal for the Isles who need to retool right now, but maybe they can flip those picks to someone who might want them more.