Sources tell TSN the Toronto Maple Leafs made a strong pitch to acquire 21-year-old forward Bobby Ryan and 39-year-old defenceman Mathieu Schneider from the Anaheim Ducks.
The Leafs offered a conditional first round draft pick in 2009 along with two prospects.
To stay in the hunt for John Tavares, Victor Hedman or one of the projected top 5 players in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, Toronto attached a condition that would guarantee the pick the Ducks received couldn't be higher than 6th. Had the Ducks agreed to the trade, the protector on Toronto's 2009 draft pick would have pushed the pick to 2010.
According to a secondary source, Bobby Ryan is a young player the Toronto Maple Leafs are very eager to acquire and Schneider had to be included in the package to give Anaheim cap relief.
It's likely, had the deal gone through, Toronto would have aggressively tried to trade the veteran defenseman for a draft pick.
Ryan, now 21-years-old was drafted second overall in 2005 behind Sidney Crosby and is considered ready to step into the NHL.
He scored 10 points in 23 games with the Ducks last season and recorded 20 points in 16 playoff games with Anaheim's AHL affiliate, the Portland Pirates.
The Ducks chose to go with the Atlanta Thrashers package that Included veteran defenseman Ken Klee, forward Brad Larsen and left wing prospect Chad Painchaud.