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Leafs considering stripping Tavares of the captaincy


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Graham Montgomery
July 2, 2024  (11:48)
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Toronto Maple Leafs captain John Tavares giving his end-of-season exit interview
Photo credit: Sportsnet

The Toronto Maple Leafs could be making a change to their leadership group according to a new rumor curtesy of Nick Kypreos.

The Leafs insider revealed today that the team is considering stripping John Tavares of the captaincy. Currently, Auston Matthews appears to be the favorite to take over in the role.
Nick Kypreos on SN discussing the Leafs potentially stripping the 'C' from Tavares:

"From what I'm hearing, the Leafs are contemplating taking the captaincy away from him and giving it to Auston. They will talk about it. I'm not saying it's going to happen, but it's real."

Such a move would make sense for the Leafs, as Tavares continues to age and Matthews enters his prime. After all, Matthews figures to be around for much longer than Tavares at this point, and he will certainly be with the team for at least the next four seasons, while Tavares is only signed on for one more campaign with the blue and white. Leafs fans seem to largely agree with this sentiment.
They will probably talk to JT, I can see him being willing to pass on the captaincy, let someone mew take the reigns. He's been captain for many years with the Isles and now Leafs. I am sure he wouldn't mind just playing.

In related news, Leafs general manager Brad Treliving remains coy about Tavares' status with the team. The current captain is eligible to sign an extension with the team as of today, but it appears as though those conversations have not started yet. Tavares is already 33 and will be turning 34 early int he 2024-25 season.
Treliving concludes media briefing staying mum on Marner and now John Tavares, whose extension can also be discussed as of today. GM does say he had a good meeting with the captain when he got back from the WHC and has seen both Tavares and Marner working out at practice rink.

As such, his longevity with the team is certainly in doubt. Furthermore, his level of play has certainly declined, although captains do not necessarily need to be the best players on their teams. That is already the case with Tavares, as Matthews is clearly the better player. Could this be the year he finally takes over the captaincy?
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Leafs considering stripping Tavares of the captaincy

Do you think the Toronto Maple Leafs should give the captaincy to Auston Matthews?

Yes10844.8 %
No13355.2 %
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