Sunday, September 29, 2013

My Educated Guess on the Leafs Last Roster Spot

With today and tomorrow being the final days that NHL teams have to finalize their rosters and get under the salary cap for the start of the season, the Maple Leafs are closing in on an opening day lineup.  With names like Bodie, Smith, Brennan, and Liles on the waiver wire and others like Broll and Percy being sent down directly to the Marlies, the Leafs have little house work left to do.

Aside from the guys who are virtual locks to make the team, there seem to be five players still in limbo vying for one roster spot (the Leafs have just a little over $1M in cap space right now).  Those players are Jerry D'Amigo, Andrew MacWilliam, Josh Leivo, Jamie Devane, and Morgan Rielly.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Some Thoughts on the Leafs Heading Into the Preseason

The preseason is just two days away for the Toronto Maple Leafs, where no doubt a lot of the questions we've been asking about the roster will begin to be answered.  Ahead of that though, I'd just like to share some of my owns thoughts about the team in something of an informal post.  You've likely all read Elliott Friedman's 30 Thoughts column, so this should be pretty easy for you guys to handle.  Here we go:

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Why I Think the Leafs Should Probably Trade Cody Franson

The Situation: Training camp is a little over a week away for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Nazem Kadri and Cody Franson are both still Restricted Free Agents in need of new contracts.  The Leafs have roughly $4,900,000 in cap space, or $2,450,000 to spend per player.  The cheapest way possible to sign both of these players would be to sign them to bridge contracts (usually two-year deals close to half of what older players with similar production earn).  We've all done our estimates and most seem to think bridge contracts for both Kadri and Franson would fall in the $2.5 to $3 million range per year.  That already puts them over the cap.  The concerning thing is that even if you got them for cheaper somehow, you're still leaving yourself with virtually no cap space.  While some people don't have an issue with that, I really think you need at least around $1,500,000 in cap space going into the season to carry and/or call-up spare players, which can be especially important when you have someone get injured, but not injured enough to go on the injured reserve (which temporarily wipes a player's cap hit off the books).  The New Jersey Devils had this issue a couple years ago when they were pressed up against the cap and dressed less than 18 skaters in a game because they couldn't afford to call anyone up.