If we were to rewind the clock just a few short years no one would have predicted that the Montreal Canadiens would be in their current state, and certainly no one would have predicted that the Maple Leafs would be in their current state.
In the case of the Canadiens they once looked like the most promising team in all of Canada. Boasting a host of young talents like Max Pacioretty, P.K. Subban and Carey Price, the Habs seemed destined like a team to contend for a Stanley Cup Championship for many years to come, however they have since been on a drastic downward spiral that has completely seen their fortunes reversed.
Meanwhile the Toronto Maple Leafs were proving to be entirely unsuccessful, at least when compared to the lofty expectations that always surround that franchise, and that seemed to be in large part due to a core that included Dion Phaneuf, Phil Kessel and David Clarkson just to name a few. However much like the Canadiens their fate has been drastically altered and after a short and speedy rebuild the Leafs not look like arguing the most promising team north of the boarder, although the Winnipeg Jets would certainly argue that point.
Often times trades are made between two teams that are moving in the complete opposite direction, one need only look at the National Hockey League's trade deadline each and every season for proof of that fact, and that may be exactly the case for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens at this time.
While we haven't heard any trade rumors regarding any potential deal between the two franchises, there has been some very strange behavior today coming from the Canadiens organization, behavior that has led to rampant speculation about a potential move between the two franchises later this summer.
According to a report from Habs beat writer Andrew Zadarnowski, Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin and several high rankings members of his staff have been spotted in Toronto today. The move is particularly noteworthy due to the huge number of high-ranking Habs personnel that made the move with Bergevin today.
Zadarnowski is reporting that Larry Carriere, Eric Crawford, Sean Burke, and Francis Bouillon all joined Bergevin on the road trip, and this once again points to the fact that there is definitely more than meets the eye here.
Now to be clear the Canadiens American Hockey League affiliate, the Laval Rocket, are playing the Toronto Marlies in Toronto on Monday, however even Bergevin alone going to this game would have raised eyebrows. The Canadiens themselves are playing in Columbus tonight, so it's extremely unusual to see a general manager halfway across the continent on a game night for his team. The fact that Bergevin was joined by such a large number of his staff only adds to the intrigue.
The only reason I could see Bergevin making this move is if he is discussing another potential deal with the Maple Leafs come later this summer. Bergevin and Leafs general manager Lou Lamoriello came to terms of a deal that sent Tomas Plekanec to Montreal prior to the deadline, so it wouldn't be a shocking to see these two business once again.
Could there be a move brewing between the two? The Canadiens do need a center and the Leafs do have Tyler Bozak on an expiring contract, could they potentially trade for his rights in order to secure exclusive negotiations with Bozak before he becomes a free agent? It's all speculation right now but there is definitely something going on here.