The Maple Leafs will use star forward Mitch Marner as a defenseman this season!

Published September 29, 2022 at 7:06 PM
BY JEFF DROUIN

This season, if there is one team that will have to prove that it can win in the playoffs, it is the Toronto Maple Leafs.

For the past few seasons, the Leafs have disappointed their fans with early first round exits and the organization obviously wants to avoid a repeat of that scenario this year.

To achieve this, it will take a contribution from everyone on the team, especially from forward Mitch Marner. The latter has often been the subject of criticism from Toronto hockey fans, but as Marco Normandin of Habsolumentfan.com reports, Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe reportedly has some rather unusual plans for his star player.

In a press scrum, Keefe said, in all seriousness, that he plans to use Marner as a defenseman this season on occasion, which is why he's been practicing with defenseman Morgan Rielly a few times since Maple Leafs camp began.



What's that? Mitch Marner as a defenseman?

It may seem strange to some, but older players may remember that Scotty Bowman, back when he was managing the Detroit Red Wings, used center Sergei Fedorov as a defenseman on occasion.

Of course, that's not the norm, but when a player is versatile, he can be used in any capacity. However, Sheldon Keefe's plan seems to be to use Marner in specific situations, not to make him a full-time defenseman. There is a nuance to be made here.

But I have to tell you that I'm still surprised by this strategy from an NHL powerhouse and let's just say that it could say a lot about the team's defense going into the 2022-2023 season.

But you can look at it one of two ways, either the Maple Leafs are deficient defensively, or Marner is an ultra versatile player.

What do you think?
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September 29   |   118 answers
The Maple Leafs will use star forward Mitch Marner as a defenseman this season!

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