It turns out Kasperi Kapanen's availability was one of the worst-kept secrets in the NHL.
The Toronto Maple Leafs spoke to the Anaheim Ducks, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, and New Jersey Devils before trading the forward to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday, reports The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun.
The Maple Leafs attempted to reacquire the 13th overall selection they originally gave the Hurricanes in the Patrick Marleau swap in June 2019, but Carolina wasn't interested in paying that price, a source told LeBrun.
Toronto asked Chicago whether it would include the 17th overall pick in a package for Kapanen, but the Blackhawks balked, according to LeBrun.
The Leafs ultimately sent the 24-year-old winger to Pittsburgh along with AHLers Pontus Aberg and Jesper Lindgren in exchange for the 15th overall selection in 2020, forward Evan Rodrigues, Hallander, and minor-league defenseman David Warsofsky.
Kapanen was long suspected to be on the block considering the Maple Leafs' need to bolster their defense, their salary-cap crunch, and his $3.2-million cap hit.