The Toronto Maple Leafs and Chicago Blackhawks have completed a minor trade, swapping Kurtis Gabriel for Chad Krys. The two teams are set to meet over the weekend, meaning they can swap minor league players in the process.
The Maple Leafs are dealing with a few defensive absences, including injuries to both Rasmus Sandin and Travis Dermott. They were forced to insert Kristians Rubins into the lineup over the last couple of nights, allowing the young Latvian defenseman to make his NHL debut. Krys, who hasn’t completed that milestone yet himself, will give the team an extra depth option to fill out the minor league lineup or step in should another injury take place.
Selected 45th overall in 2016, Krys went on to play at Boston University for three seasons before joining the Rockford IceHogs. Injuries and inconsistency has marred his time there, with just 64 games played to this point. In eight contests this year, the left-shot defenseman has one points.
Gabriel meanwhile does have 49 games at the NHL level, though none of them have come this season. The 6’4″ forward is known more for his fighting ability than his skill with the puck, as seen by the 153 penalty minutes he’s racked up to this point compared to just five points. Now 28, he signed a one-year, one-way deal with the Maple Leafs in the offseason but failed to make the team out of camp. In 13 games with the minor league Toronto Marlies, he has two points.