I have a theoryâ€¦it seems to me this is the year the Leafs need to move up in the draft, possibly at all costs. They are undeniably a franchise in transition, yet with little encouraging hope for future ahead. Their draft record of late is looking up (Steen, Rask etc.), but they have not had a player of note come from the draft since Wendel. Historically, in the last decade, when the team has managed to hang on to their picks, theyâ€™ve yielded quality like Jeff Ware, Eric Fichaud and dear Nik Antropov. Continually finishing at the top of the non-playoff teams, or losing out in the first two rounds of the playoffs, has doomed this team to mid-first round picks and a destiny of never picking an impact player. Steen seems a solid building block, if not a potential year-after-year All Star. So, hereâ€™s what I propose, no, insist the Leafs commit to doing this yearâ€¦move way high up in the draft. Regardless of its preached-about weaknesses (when has a draft year not been complained aboutâ€¦1996 withstanding, thereâ€™s one that deserves bashing), this year boasts as many as 5 potential franchise corner-stones, players that have legitimate talent to build a team around. As I see it the Leafs options are: (1) Conservatism: stand pat at 13, take the best player available and hope they turn out more Martin Havlat than Luca Cereda. End up with the likes of Stewart, Sanguinetti or Wishart and feel comfortable that you have a serviceable player if all goes right. (2) Proactive thinking: Throw in whatever it takes to swap 13 with something in the top 5-8. Take a player the likes of Staal, Toews, Backstrom or Kessel who will play with, then replace, Sundin and be equated with the Maple Leafs for their career. There are interesting wildcards, however. Firstly, the possibility of any of Little, T****sy or Frolik being available at 13 (though remote) would make the proactive route less necessary. Keep in mind Joe Sakic was a 14th overall pick himself. Franchise-building material is not necessarily found exclusively in the 1-5 picks. Secondly, there is the slight issue of â€œthrowing in whatever it takesâ€. If inter-conference swaps are not too likely, it seems Chicago at 3 or Columbus at 6 are targetsâ€¦itâ€™s just a matter of what do the Leafs have to offer these clubs. The move up does seem possible, however. As I see it, the Leafs destiny is to pick 13-20 ad infinitum, never finding a blue-chip franchise corner-stone, the likes of which they havenâ€™t seen since Frank Mahovolich. Make the move this year, and those 13-20 picks will have a leader and someone to work with.