Could Toronto's P.K. Subban soon also be the Maple Leafs' P.K. Subban?
Hockey analysts are talking about it as the trade deadline approaches, but not for entirely positive reasons. The all-star defenceman could be shipped out by the rival Montreal Canadiens.
It all shook down when a Subban slip-up led to the Colorado Avalanche scoring the game-winning goal with two minutes to go in the Canadiens recent home game. After the blunder, Subban was benched and Habs head coach Michel Therrien, publicly blamed him for the loss.
That is a rare move for a coach to put the blame squarely on the franchise player. It caught the attention of Leafs Nation, who invited Subban to "come on home to Toronto," where he was born and raised.
Marc Dumont, the managing editor of the fansite Habs Eyes on the Prize, said it is an indication that the Canadiens have "major issues" as a team.
He called this season an "embarrassment" for the Habs.
He said, despite Subban clearly making an error, the Montreal fans are behind the defenceman. In a stand off between player and coach, Dumont believes Therrien would lose.
"Subban is a star in Montreal, on the ice and off," he said. "He sells seats."
Most statistics tend to back that up: Subban, despite playing defence, leads the team in scoring. He has been on the ice for over 60 per cent of Montreal's goals this year.
So what chance do the Leafs have of netting Subban in a trade? "Zero to none," said Dumont.
"Let's be clear here: any trade that would send P.K. Subban packing should be considered an unmitigated disaster, unless the return is a player on the same level as Erik Karlsson or Connor McDavid," said the writer in his post on the issue.
So the Leafs, currently devoid of such star players as Karlsson and McDavid, look like they will sit out the Subban sweepstakes, if indeed the player is leaving Montreal.