Big news from the Toronto Maple Leafs, as the team is announcing Wednesday that it’s trading star winger Phil Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
In exchange, Toronto will be getting a number of prospects and trades, including winger Nick Spaling, prospects Kasperi Kapanen and Scott Harrington, a third-round pick and a conditional first in the move.
Toronto also sent forward Tyler Biggs and defenceman Tim Erixon to the Penguins along with a conditional pick.
If Pittsburgh makes the playoffs next season, the Leafs will receive their first-round pick and send Pittsburgh back the second-rounder they currently own from the Daniel Winnik trade.
Leafs president Brendan Shanahan says the team was in need of a shake up, and that he didn’t believe the current group of players could win the Stanley Cup.
“We are here to build a team that is capable of winning the Stanley Cup, and there are no shortcuts to go around doing that.” Shanahan told reporters, “We didn’t see that this group was going to get a whole lot better in getting us toward that goal.”
“For whatever reason we had a lot of talented individuals on this team, but as a group, the core group, it hadn’t worked. This is about winning, and Phil’s certainly a talented player, but we knew that changes had to come.”