The Toronto Maple Leafs' brass isn't looking at the short-term health of its club and has all but given up on making a big move to try and claw back into the Eastern Conference playoff race.
"At this point, the Leafs are not into a full tear down mode, they're not looking to dump out and go after Connor McDavid," Sportsnet's Damien Cox reported on Hockey Night in Canada's "Headlines" segment Saturday night. "But they are no longer looking to add pieces in an effort to save this season and make the playoffs.
"Deals they might have made in December, they're not looking to make right now."
As the Maple Leafs look to the future though, they're preparing to begin contract extension talks with two key pending unrestricted free agents, according to Cox.
"They are looking to get some of their assets under control as they look to get their cap situation under control," Cox said. "(The club) is looking to open negotiations with (Cody Franson and Mike Santorelli) to try to get them signed."
Both Santorelli, 29, and Franson, 27, are signed to bargain-bin, one-year deals worth $3.3 million and $1.5 million, respectively. They'll both be due a healthy raise this summer.
Negotiations with Franson could, presumably, be complicated by how fractious the club's negotiations with him have been in recent seasons.
As for Santorelli, he hasn't been on a multi-year contract since the 2012-13 season. He's managed nine goals and 26 points in 45 games with the Maple Leafs this season and can play any forward position. If he hits the open market, there's likely to be considerable interest in his services.