The Vancouver Canucks of the National Hockey League acquired Josh Leivo of Innisfil, Ontario in a trade with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday. The Maple Leafs were in need to make a roster move when they signed William Nylander of Calgary, Alberta to a contract on Saturday.
Leivo, a left winger, was traded from the Maple Leafs to the Canucks for prospect Michael Carcone of Ajax, Ontario. In 2018-19, Leivo played 27 games for the Maple Leafs, mostly on the team’s checking lines. He had four goals and two assists for six points, was a +1, with seven penalty minutes, three power play points, two game winning goals, 38 shots on goal, 11 faceoff wins, five blocked shots, 22 hits, 15 takeaways and 15 giveaways.
Leivo has already set career highs in game winning goals, shots on goal, faceoff wins, hits and takeaways. He has tied career highs in power play points and blocked shots. Leivo’s game winning goals this season came in a 4-2 win over the Washington Capitals on October 13 and in a 4-2 win over the Boston Bruins on November 26.
Leivo’s game winning goal over the Capitals was on the power play at 6:28 of the third period and broke a 2-2 tie. Connor Brown of Toronto, Ontario and Andreas Johnsson picked up the assists. Leivo’s game winning goal against the Bruins was also on the power play (and broke a 2-2 tie) and came at 18:38 of the second period from Tyler Ennis of Edmonton, Alberta and Canadian Olympic gold medalist Patrick Marleau of Aneroid, Saskatchewan. Marleau won a gold medal for Canada in men’s hockey at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver and the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.
Leivo was originally the Maple Leafs’ third round draft pick, 86th overall, in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. He played his junior career with the Sudbury Wolves and Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League and six seasons with the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League.
Carcone played his junior hockey with the Drummondville Voltigeurs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. A versatile player because he can play left wing or right wing, Carcone will be joining the Marlies. This season with the Utica Comets, he has six goals and 11 assists for 17 points in 20 games.
The Maple Leafs and Canucks are moving in two different directions. Toronto are legitimate Stanley Cup contenders, while Vancouver is clearly in a rebuilding mode.