NHL Rumor Mill – February 4, 2019

by | Feb 4, 2019 | Rumors | 62 comments

Latest on the Blackhawks, Leafs, Lightning, and Ducks in today’s NHL rumor mill. 


NBC SPORTS: Adam Gretz explored the Chicago Blackhawks’ trade options as the Feb. 25 trade deadline approaches. He believes defensemen Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith could be at the top of their “sale list”, as they’re both over 33 and still under long-term contracts. Both carry no-movement clauses and Seabrook reportedly declined to waive his for the time being. Gretz feels there will be a point when their performances take a steep dive over the remaining tenure of their contracts so it’s worthwhile for the Blackhawks to at least try to move them. 

Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook has declined to waive his no-movement clause for the time being. (Photo via NHL Images)

Other trade possibilities include center Artem Anisimov (limited no-trade clause until July 1) and winger Brandon Saad. Both are signed beyond this season and have seen their production decline. 

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Jason Lieser reports the Blackhawks recent improvement could make their trade deadline plans murkier. The Blackhawks have risen to within five points of a wild-card berth, prompting Lieser to wonder if management might hold off making moves to see how far the team can take this run. He noted they’re already exploring whether they can shed the contracts of Keith and Seabrook. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t blame general manager Stan Bowman for trying to find suitors for Keith or Seabrook.  If they weren’t under contract for so long (Keith has four more years remaining on his deal while Seabrook has five) they would have an easier time drumming up interest.

Maybe they find one but the interested party will probably want the Blackhawks to either take back a toxic contract, absorb a significant chunk of their annual salary-cap hit, or include a juicy sweetener (like a good young player, a first-round pick or a top prospect) to make the deal work.

The Hawks will likely have an easier time moving Anisimov by waiting until July 1, when his no-trade clause expires, though they might have to pick up part of his $4.55-million cap hit to make him more enticing to rival clubs. Saad, 26, has struggled to regain his 30-goal form of 2015-16 but has shown improvement of late, with 17 goals and 29 points in 51 games. If they can shed one of the other higher-salaried players they could retain Saad. 


THE HOCKEY NEWS: Matt Larkin is skeptical about the possibility of Toronto Maple Leafs star Mitch Marner getting an offer sheet this summer. Noting a recent report by TSN’s Darren Dreger saying there are teams who are “100 percent” preparing one for Marner, Larkin questions the wisdom of telegraphing their intentions to Leafs management, pointing out that will increase their urgency to re-sign the winger before July 1. 

Larkin also points out Marner could get a longer-term deal from the Leafs (eight years maximum) than from a rival club (seven years). Any offer north of $10.144 million per season would require sending four first-round picks to Toronto as compensation if he’s successfully signed away from the Leafs. There’s also the ill-will that would be created between the Leafs and whatever team signs Marner to an offer sheet.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Offer sheets rarely happen. Sure, Marner could sign on July 1 but there’s no certainty he will. For that matter, he could be disinterested in talking to other clubs. 

As tempting as Marner might be, I’m in agreement with Larkin. Given the type of season Marner’s having, it could cost well over $10 million per season to ink him to an offer sheet, so that compensation of four first-round picks could be too expensive for most clubs to seriously entertain.

It’s a really stupid move for any club to leak their offer sheet intentions to the media about any player, especially this early in the year. That only increases the likelihood of the Leafs getting him re-signed before the end of June. 


THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): In a recent mailbag segment, Joe Smith speculated over possible trade-deadline moves by the Tampa Bay Lightning. An intriguing option could be a right-shot defenseman signed beyond this season, such as the LA Kings’ Alec Martinez, Ottawa’s Cody Ceci (restricted free agent), or Vancouver’s Chris Tanev. A physical forward like Philadelphia’s Wayne Simmonds or Carolina’s Micheal Ferland could also make sense. Smith adds it wouldn’t be surprising if the Lightning stands pat. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bolts are dominating the standings so management isn’t under any real pressure to improve the roster. Still, if a reasonable offer presents itself I don’t doubt they’ll consider it. 


ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Elliott Teaford speculates Anaheim Ducks GM Bob Murray might be done dealing. Murray already tweaked the roster with four separate trades this season, making the Ducks younger, faster and cheaper. He’s also attempting to re-sign pending UFA winger Jakob Silfverberg, though Teaford suggests he could be moved for draft picks and/or prospects if unsigned by the trade deadline. He expects they’ll soldier on with their veteran-laden roster for the remainder of this season and explore changes in the offseason. 


  1. You have to question the real intentions of leaking your willingness to sign Marner to an offer sheet. If nothing else it messes with TML’s head by adding pressure to sign and overpay him. TML’s biggest challenge is not finding talent, it’s keeping it.

    There’s the argument that overpaying is bad for everyone, but there are 2 sides to that. Watching a team overpay and handicap itself, may prove to be incentive enough for other teams to tighten up the wallets moving forward… (kind of a scorched earth policy)

    Either way, I don’t think teams are being careless with their intention, I think it’s more likely that they have other motives…

    • Worst case scenario?
      Someone signs Marner to an offer sheet. Leafs get 4 first round picks. You could always sign a FA with that money, like a Mark Stone?

    • Leaking the intentions of offer sheeting a rival teams top player is the complete opposite of stupid, it is almost brilliant, especially when the rival team is the Leafs and they are already going to face a tough time getting all the young talent locked up.
      Sure the Leafs can try to sign Marner early but with Marner knowing that there will be at least one offer sheet coming in July it takes all the pressure off of him to sign a low ball offer, so what do the Leafs do, they can try to insult Marner early and offer 5-6 year at 8 mill at which Marner simply says no, or they have to go high and offer 5-6 year at 11-12 mill which would put the Leafs in cap hell to try to keep all their young guys.
      Leaking out your intent of offer sheet is really quite brilliant.

      • Dr Pepper, I don’t think brilliant is the word I would choose. Yes there is a reason they are doing it, and it is obvious not “3 dimensional chess” or brilliant.
        It is to apply pressure to try and force them into cap problem or to trade other assets to stay compliant within that cap.
        The way I see it, they are leaking it because they have no intention of actually offer sheeting him, or they wouldn’t leak it. They just told Dubas that. To quote Don Vito Corleone to Sonny – “Never tell anyone outside the family what you are thinking”.
        And to the other obvious point, NHL salaries are based on comparable contracts. Whether you drive the price up with an offer sheet, or use leaked threats of one to drive it up, it drives up the cost for every young RFA coming out of his ELC. Brilliant, I am sure that GM’s owner is thrilled.

    • BCD I was thinking the same thing, if teams are leaking this, there is a reason they’re leaking it.

      • Ray Bark, I think you missed my point but in the end made it for me. I agree, I don’t think any team that leaks their intentions actually have any intent of signing him, they are just driving up the price for the Leafs to sign him with just the implication that they may offer sheet him.
        Marner…. I would argue, is the Leafs best player bar none, The Leafs didn’t put Marner and Mathews together to get Marner going, it was for Mathews. If the Leafs think that Mathews is their franchise player and are going to make him the highest payed, that may not sit to well with the Marner camp. I have heard somewhere that Marner and his family and agents are quietly insulted that whenever the discussion comes up about the Leafs captaincy Marner is never mentioned, it is always either J.T. or Mathews. It has also been said many times that Marner will not sign until after Mathews is signed because he will not accept significantly less than what Mathews is signed for.
        So if a manager and lets just say its Lou Lamoriello puts out there that they intend to offer sheet Marner and drives the price up to put the Leafs between a rock and a hard place I think that is truly brilliant. To say that leaking info drives up the price for all RFA players coming out of their ELC’s is simply not true, Travis Konecny will not make a dime more because a GM leaked his intention to offer sheet Marner. You are correct that comparables do drive up the price and I would argue that a fair comparable for Marner would be close to what McDavid got and certainly as much or more than what Mathews gets and if a rival manager leaks that they are willing to pay that kind of money for him if the Leafs don’t….. well thats just brilliant.

      • By leaking it you are also sending a message to another team who is thinking of making an offer that it better be good because one offer is already being prepared. Starts a sile t auction bidding war.

        The draft picks given up dont matter. If a team is willing to make an offer theybare willing to pay the picks. Doesnt reallg matter if toronto knows its coming.

        Also toronto weighing signing marner to a massive against gaining 4 1rst rou d picks may cause them to let the offer sheet come.

        Those picks could be valuable in future trades. Or maintaining their cap.

      • I heard somewhere he ISN’T insulted. just as reliable as the other post.

      • My only 2 points are:
        1 – that the reason for leaking this is obvious. To drive the price up. Every GM knows that.
        2 – If you actually wanted to offer sheet Marner, you wouldn’t leak it because you just drove the price up.

        So all you have accomplished is letting Dubas know there are multiple teams that are leaking that have zero intent on offer sheeting him. How is that some brilliant strategy? We all know why it is happening, how can Dubas not know that?

        And yes you are driving the price up for every offensive player coming out of his ELC.
        So if a player coming out of his ELC was a 60 point guy was worth 6 Million last year when a 90 point guy was worth 9 Million. You don’t think the 60 point guys will ask for 7 million if the 90 point guy is now worth $10.5?
        Of course he will, it impacts everybody offensive guy coming out of his ELC, including the team(s) that are leaking.

    • it messes with TML head? LMAO. Right, yah, sounds like TML has already been living rent free in yours.

      • There is nothing brilliant going on here. Darren Dreger is looking for stories and he happens to focus on the Leafs so he goes to various GMs and says, are you considering an offer sheet to Marner. The GM, too afraid to be called out for collusionary tactics says yes and guess what Dreger has something to write about. I can see Dubas peeing his pants over this – laughing.

        Have fun with your Leaf rumors.

      • Trekie, never thought of it that way, but that seems as logical as any other explanation!

  2. IMO, Marner is worth 4 first round picks, along with Mathews, Laine, Rantanen, Point, Aho. If any of these guys are not offer-sheeted, I don’t think we’ll ever see one!

    • Agreed, all except Laine are worth 4 first rounders. He is one dimensional. If he is not scoring, he is useless. Thing is, Jets are so good they dont really need him. I see Jets flipping him for decent dman.

      • Don’t forget that the player must sign the offer sheet before anything happens. I think players like the ones mentioned by Bruinsfan would think long and hard before changing teams. This could be the year though.

    • Marner seems to be the one that stirs the drink in Toronto! I didn’t realize Toronto receives 4 1st round picks..

      The have a lot of talent leafs fans don’t you think Marner is more valuable to the team than Nylander? Or can they actually keep both?

      So its 4 1st rounders if Marner signs an offer sheet from another team? Wow

      • @blackandgold, pick compensation depends on what the contract is signed at. The higher the ‘annual’ amount, the greater the compensation.
        I put annual in quotation because its not as easy as yearly cap hit. As an example if someone signs at $8M for 5 years then that is the annual hit. However, if they sign at $8 for 7 years then it is 56M (TCV) divided by 5 or 11.2M. In short, any offer sheet greater than 5 years is still Total contract value divided by 5.

        Clear as mud

    • Hi Bruinsfan,

      I’m with you.

      This is a very odd year in that all those you’ve listed are extremely high calibre players and RFAs this summer; and extremely sought after, league wide. Add to that , more teams than normal that are in a position to make an offer sheet.

      Prime-time for needing teams to do an offer sheet.

      I think 4 first rounders is reasonable for Point, AM, MM and Colorado’s big Finn. Laine’s inconsistency, not so much. And to me, less so for Aho.

      As I said, prime time for offer sheet.

      None of these players have to sign; and likelihood is almost nil that ALL sign an offer sheet. One or two may; and then current teams are likely to match.

      Worst case scenario, they can waive the offer sheet in front of current GMs face and potentially drive up final contract deal.

      Dreger posted 100% certainty that teams are already drafting up an offer sheet for MM.

      Like him or not; his reporting has been pretty reliable in the past.

      All this means is that at least 2 GMs have verbally communicated that they will offer sheet MM if he is still available. That is what two or more GMs are stating to Dreger, in private, at that time.

      They could change their minds.

      The long and short of it; I believe through his reporting; that there is a strong probability of an offer sheet going to MM if still available on 1/7.

      I think it will turn out that MM’s team can save face (already publicly stated that they will not be dealing in-season) by coming to an agreement AFTER AM signs and some time between the end of Leafs’ season and 1/7. This obviously would be in the best interest of GMKD and Leafs. Less so for MM and his agent. (and also for his Dad, LOL)

      • Pengy… So what do our penguins need to do?

        I’m thinking somehow get Michael Ferland
        – A 1st round pick and young goalie Tristan Jarry.

        Second–Add a veteran d-man to come play 3rd pairing with young promising Marcus Pettersson.

        Say a Robert Bortuzzo a Jordie benn guys that play defense first and ad toughness for the playoffs.

        These two moves make us strong.

        Number one picks aren’t pretty much guaranteed like the NFL so…

        Crosby Guentzel Bjugstad
        Malkin Ferland Rust
        MCCann Hornqvist Pearson
        Blueger Cullen (ZAR Simon Wilson)

        Letang Dumolin
        Schultz Matta
        Pettersson (Benn/Bortuzzo)

        extra Rikola Johnson

      • Hi blackNGold

        I know I keep repeating myself; but first order of business HAS to be…. to waive Ruhweedel— having him as completely wasted cap space is almost as mind-boggling as playing JJ (almost— LOL)

        Agree on depth D— but rather than trying to get one and give up assets— GMJR should at least put a call in to Bieksa’s agent

        Bortuzzo a much bigger man; Benn younger. However, we’re talking depth D and Bieksa (RHD) would come w/o asset cost; and if he didn’t work out— Riikola could go in— win win in my mind.

        I’d try to keep on to Jarry– more valuable trade chip down the road— not getting much now. IMO, this is a dramatic down year for him and he will be much better next year (and therefore much greater value).

        Re a grit winger. would love Ferland for sure— but at this point, there will be a bidding war; and Pens cupboard is bare. I don’t have an issue with 1st + for Ferland; it’s just that giving up a first then leaves Pens with first pick in 4th round (Buffalo’s)– not a desirable situation.

        You left out Huff’nPuff (Phil Kessel)off your roster proposal. Fruedian slip?

        Instead of Ferland, is there another grit winger at less requested trade return? Might be less offensively productive; but would add the grit needed in playoffs?

        Is there anyway that a trade can be made for Ferland w/o giving up a first— would Carolina bite on say Rust for Ferland?

        If so:

        Sid, Guentz, Bjug
        Gino, Ferland, Phil
        McC, Horny, Pearson
        Blueger Cullen (ZAR *Simon Wilson)

        *Note: Simon has the ability to play wing on top 3 lines.

        Letang Dumo
        Schultz Matta
        Pettersson Bieksa

        Johnson (press box; tallying stats please)

        Note: Prow is also a better option than JJ.

        If it is just an acquisition of a pugnacious player who will be around to rattle cages (if need be) in the play-offs and only expected to play 4th line minutes— there are much much cheaper options than Ferland.

        I think a D depth and reasonably priced “rugged” player for “presence” purposes just might be enough for play-offs.

        Is there someone (“rugged” bottom 6 winger) out there that can be fairly easily gotten for say ZAR?

        Just a thought.

      • Pengy..BlacknGold here! I was thinking in order to get Michael Ferland on board maybe move Tanner Pearson (who i do like) and our number # 1 pick?

        Pearson is good, young, but hasn’t fully hit stride yet! We are trying to win the next 2 to 3 years so.

        Crosby Guentzal Bjugstad
        Malkin Ferland Kessel
        Mccann Rust Hornqvis
        Blueger Cullen (ZAR Simon Wilson)

        if we move pearson

        Pearson & our # 1 pick to Carolina
        Ferland to Pittsburgh

        i know you want to keep Jarry

        maybe resign him next year the cap goes up $ 4 million dollars so…

      • Pengy…I’m getting that bad feeling that Derrick Brassard is going to end up in Columbus via Florida via a Brobosky trade…uuuggghhhhhh

      • Pengy…….Bad 4-0 loss to Carolina last night! I know no Malkin is out and Schultz isn’t quite back yet but I’m not feeling great about the chances at the playoffs let alone the Cup.
        Rutherford is trying to get bigger but we won two cups with Speed, quickness and a solid fore check..

        If we don’t get Ferland

        Tyler Ennis 29, makes $665,000, I loved hime on Buffalo he is quick, fast, skilled and can be a terrific 3rd 4th line center.

        Brendan Leipsik 24, $650,000 fast, skilled, Hagelin 2.0 but a better scoring touch those two could be had cheap and add terrific speed and balance to our line-up..

        i loved Tyler Ennis when he was in Buffalo! Brendan Leipsic has been solid here in Los Angeles and both teams we can make a deal.

        These two add speed, skill, and depth and we still get younger .

        3rd line Ennis Hornqvist Rust
        4th line Blueger Leipsic Cullen

  3. If Bowman would agree to it, I could see the Jackets sending Wennberg, a prospect and either Murray or a draft pick to Chicago for Saad and Anisimov.

  4. I would say seabrooke is un tradeable due to contract and performance.
    Keith would be in demand because he’s still playing at a high level and a reasonable contract. Not sure he will waive his NTC but if I’m a team like Vegas I would make the call.

  5. Don’t think Marner would sign an offer sheet if it was offered to him. A player his age has lots of years to sign a big money contract. Take a few million less now for the next five or six years and take a good run at a cup. The Leafs are building something special if they can stay the couse. If they can’t win a cup in the next five years then go chase the money if they chose, same with Mathews. These guys have to realize the more money they take, that lessens what kind of players they have to work with, and lessens the chances of winning the cup. Their still going to make big money, but what do they want more money or a cup. These guys still got lots of time for a major payday if they wish.
    If I was the Leafs I would try to trade Gardener and a good prospect for Keith, it’s a win win for everybody. The hawks could flip him again at the deadline if they wish and get a good prospect more if they flip Gardener again and they also get some much needed cap space.

    • Yes Marner could take less money and leave more pie on the plate. I don’t think his agent will be encouraging that however and will get as much as possible for Marner as he should.
      Every team has the same cap limit it doesn’t fall on Matthews or Marner how the leaf’s decide to divide the pie.
      Honorable to leave money on the table but there is no guarantees by the next time your contract is up you will be as valuable as you are today. Always just one injury or concussion away from being a different player.

    • If the going rate for someone in your profession, with your skill level and experience was $100,000 per year, you had offers for this available elsewhere, and your boss pulled you aside and offered you a new contract for $70,000 per year and the privilege of working for him, what would you say?

      • @DM, completely different situations. The difference between 70K and 100K is a lot larger than 70M and 100M.
        Secondly, players in Toronto have the advantage of earnings from endorsements and later on in their life at social events.

      • It’s not as if there aren’t endorsement opportunities elsewhere…I realize Toronto is the self-appointed center of the hockey universe but in reality the biggest endorsement money players are Crosby, Ovechkin and McDavid.

        Tavares is getting around $1.5M in endorsements this year. There are also several stars sharing that endorsement pie in Toronto. If, just as an example, Marner were to sign with NYR he would instantly be the biggest offensive star on the team. He could easily match or exceed that $1.5M and get paid more than Bobby Ryan.

        I won’t even get into the value of $30k versus $3M per year.

      • You really should get into the value of 3M or 30K per year, 70K/year is bordering on poverty levels in Toronto.
        3M/ year is deciding whether to buy one of Vacheron Constantin or Audemars Piguet instead of buying them both.

      • But the fact remains that people want to get paid what they are worth, compared to others of similar skill, experience etc in their industry.

        If hockey players did not want to max out their earnings, then there would be no salary cap concerns for Toronto or any other team. I agree that $10M per year is an obscene amount of money, but that doesn’t mean I would turn it down if someone wanted to pay it to me.

      • Not really valid. 70K vs $100K is a huge lifestyle difference, more than $12M vs $10M. and your company isn’t trying to win a championship based on their payroll, there’s value in that as well.

  6. Why all the focus on Marner? Four other names on that list. Jets are in the same pickle, Tampa.

    • Why all the talk about the Leafs RFAs and none on all the other just as good players on smaller markets like Carolina, Tampa and Denver? Click bait or page views come to mind when you write about one of the most popular teams and big market. If anyone gets offersheeted with hopes of success it would be one of those smaller markets that won’t be able to match…but in reality offer sheets are pipe dreams and don’t happen for a reason.

      • I don’t think that it is so much click bate, but there is a cap crunch in TO much like other cities, but cities like Winnipeg, Boston and Tampa have a better balance than TO so that there is less an urgency to conserve cap space. TO still has to have money to address depth and defence although Muzzin helps, there is more to be done if they want to make a long run. Usually TO gets their overly share of attention, but in this case there is merit.

      • Better balance according to who? Last I looked the Leafs record against playoff teams is one of the better win loss records in the NHL their goals against shots against are virtually the same as Tampa now Tampa scores alot more but I wouldn’t say balance has anything to do with it besides having a tone of skill. The Bruins have great D good goaltending and 1 line scoring thats balance? Not saying they are cup bound or anything nutty but I’ve never seen a top 5 team in a sport get so much bs about how bad and un balanced things are lol slag on

  7. Re: Duncan Keith

    There is no question; setting aside contract and age; that every team would want Duncan Keith (DK).

    His play, however waned from his peak years; is still quite good and his poise and maturity, plus his 3 Cups; is greatly desired. He still would have to waive his rights; but let’s set that aside for a minute:

    The quandary for bidding teams is age, term, and contract Cap hit. No one would take DK if he was 39, cost $10M/year (cash and Cap). I truly believe that all teams would jump on a trade to get him if he was 32, $2M (Cap and cash), and UFA.

    There is value somewhere in between. He’s 35 now, has for more years (36 yrs through 39 yrs) at $5.5M Cap but declining Cash ($3.5M, $2.65M, $2.1M, $1.5M).

    I believe he is most viably traded with retained Cap/Cash.

    At a 50% retained amount: Cap at $2.75M and cash at $1.75M, $1.32M, $1.05M, and $0.75M; he is much more desirable.

    Let’s just chew on the fact that Leafs are using $3.0M in Cap for Hainsey (starting year at 37 ending at 38). DK won’t finish a season at 38 years of age until the Spring of 2022 (3 more full years). Keith is a much much much better DMan than Hainsey.

    DK very very marketable at 50% retained. What is the return? Who right now would jump on him? Methinks that at 50% retained; a 1st, plus young roster, plus prospect is not unrealistic. It would be at the high end of the spectrum; but not unrealistic.

    Is Bowman still willing to retain 50%? Or is there a low budget team (nowhere near the cap) that Bowman could flip DK to at 100% (meaning less return in trade) who could then flip to contender (while they retain 50%) and retaining team then gets the 1st, young roster, prospect.

    What I’m hinting at is a flow through 1st … of course DK has to provide permission; but he is sent at 100% for a lottery protected first; receiving team then retains 50% and receives 1st, young roster, prospect.

    The middle team (retainer) , who already has space; is basically paying $1.75M, $1.32M, $1.05M , and $0.75M (if DK decides to play at 39) for a young roster and a prospect.

    Put another way: is DK at $2.75M Cap hit for 4 more years, worth:

    • 1st (’20), Joseph, Raddysh from TBay?

    • 1st (’20), Johnsson, and (Liljegren OR Sandin) from Leafs?

    • 1st (’19), Nosek, and (Brannstrom or Hague) from VGKs?

    Just food for thought.

    • Pengy…. Spot on I wanted Bieska to at the beginning of the year…he only wanted play for California teams bummer there.

      There has to be a taker for J.J.

      Benn is 30 and Bortuzzo is 29! I thought he was older too..but both are cheap and maybe a 5th rounder gets one of them. Our defense isn’t strong enough..one of them would be great for 3rd pairing J.J either traded or in the press box Rikola first man up.

      I’m hearing Rutherford isn’t done yet….that’s exciting..

      If we could somehow nab Ferland he would be ideal for the playoffs…

    • How could i forget the best goal scorer on the team in Phil the Thrill…yikes

  8. Just wondering if Leaf fans are still happy about the 3 year contract that Lou signed Marleau to? At the time all the Leaf fans I talked to were ecstatic about it, even though I pointed out that it overlaps Matthews and Marners new contracts. So now are you guys still happy about it? or are you guys wishing that it was only a 2 year contract like I was saying it should have been? It would make getting the key young players signed a lot easier.

    • this leaf fan was never happy about Marleau. Still is not, and what a waste of $6 million for next year

      • Perhaps Lou would like Marleau on the Island for that third year?
        Just kidding – big Patrick Marleau fan here; I hope he sticks around and finishes a fine career in Toronto. Great player, great role model for a young pro.

    • KevJam,

      Mark Tower just said basically everything I was going to say.

      I’ve no issue with the player. I have, and had , many issues with term.

      I would much rather have had them give Marleau $8.6M for each of 2 years —- a total of $17.2M (which is what he will recive by EOD July 1st).

      The third year (19/20) is the ablatross. Still at Cap hit of $1.25M for him to play at 40, and with a NMC!!!

      He can retire July 2nd ; stay home with his kids and enjoy life…. $1.25M not a big deal for his entire life-time of wealth. Don’t forget the taxes … his take-home of the $1.25M is $585K… does he want to put his body and family through a grueling season and play-offs at 40 for a mere $600K??

      • Sorry

        That should have been “cap hit of $6.25M to play at 40” not $1.25M

    • Go back to the forums from the time of signing. Literally none of the Leafs fans here were happy.
      This has always been an extremely unpopular signing with the fans but other players on the roster seem to love it.

      • Taz

        Not sure if it is a generational thing. I am, and was, against it. Two of my sons (both in their mid-20’s) and some of their friends; were not anywhere near as despondent over the signing term as I was. They seem to think the value of having his mentor-ship around was/is worth it.

        I just don’t see it.

        Leafs could have given him the contract I suggested above for 2 years and then if they thought he was still very important to the team; offered him $3M (all in Sal, no SB) to stay for one more year. That would have put Leafs $3.25M better in the Cap crunch world.

        Ahhhhhh —- Loooooouuuuuu 🙁

      • I have some hope that there is some loophole or some sort of agreement with Marleau about the last year.
        I just don’t see how Lou could have possibly not considered where the RFA stuff was headed – McDavid and Draisaitl’s contract extension talks were in full force during the time of this signing.

      • You know who likes that signing? Marner and Matthews, their mentor, stayed at his house during the all-star game, spent Christmas with his family.

      • I was talking about other forums and also talking to some friends who are Leaf fans and I also work with a bunch of Leaf fans. And all of my friends were excited about the signing and all but a few of my co-workers and people on the forums were excited about the signing. The excuse I got was basically, that is what it took the sign him and other teams were lined up to sign him to the same contract.

    • Kevjam, I don’t think Marleau would be in TO without the 3rd year added.
      I don’t think Dubas could have reasonably expected that he would land Tavares a year later. He did and now has a great player and a cap problem, which I am sure he also knew when he signed Tavares.
      It will cost the Leafs something to move salary as I don’t see an easy out. Unless the whole promise not to trade Nylander is BS.

  9. Re. Joe Smith’s (The Athletic) speculation: Alec Martinez is a left handed shot.

  10. Kevjam, you are right about Marleau contract. It should have been 2yrs not three, and for much less than 6.25 million per. I realize it’s front loaded and the last year is 1 million but my understanding is it still counts 6.25 mil against the cap next year which will likely mean Gardiner cannot be retained and possibly one or two other younger RFAs.

  11. Taz…thanks for the information on the offer sheets and picks!

  12. @blackngold – Bergevin will not trade any D on the main roster unless he’s getting back significant upgrade. D in MTL has been ok this year and slightly better since Webers return. He might be convinced to sweeten the pot if anyone wants to try and redeem Alzner

  13. IMO Matthews and Marner should not get more than Tavares. And just looking at this season you could think Marner should at least get the money that some think Matthews will/should get.
    I hope (unrealistic daydreaming???) they sign both a bridge deal between 3-5 years between $8 and $9 million.
    And please GMKD trade Nylander now or in the offseason. I’d rather have Kapanen and A. Johnson for the same money/cap hit.
    Then trade for a veteran d-man (I heard JJ from the Pens is available… just kidding… :-D)

    • Juss76 you are bang on!
      3.5m/per each for both Kappy and Johnsson. Nylander must go for picks or RHD. Solves our cap issue and d man. I don’t mind JOHNNSON/MATTHEWS/KAPANEN line. Hyman/Tavares/Marner
      This means Brown, Marleau, Nylander must go. On Defense: Gardiner/McQuaid
      Muzzin/Gudas. & Dermott/Holl
      Which means Gardiner, Hainsey, Zaitsev must go.
      These changes will balance the roster physically, skill, grit, age and financially. I also rather have Hutchinson than Sparks at back up.

      Go LEAFS Go

      • I meant Rielly/McQuaid

  14. Blackhawks would be wise to hang on to Keith and Seabrook as they are invaluable to the developement of their Defensive prospects like Boquist, Baudin, Jokiharu, Ian Mitchell etc. It is always good to have veteran players mentor new Defencemen and forwards for that matter. They can learn from the best.

  15. Offer sheet talk now, is all about driving up the cost of a contract. Ordinarily that would make little sense, unless teams are hoping to drive up the cost of Marner and put pressure on the Leafs to move somebody else for cap space. (Nylander? Pending UFA Gardiner? Maybe Kapanen?)
    That’s what I figure. Almost zero chance Marner or Matthews make signing tricky in Toronto as long as they are paid fairly. They both like playing there, so an offer sheet would have to be a big over-payment to interest either.

  16. Mitch Marner isn,t going anywhere. He’s in the ideal position to become the team superstar the Leafs haven’t had since in my opinion Darryl Sittler. He’s playing for his childhood team. He’s going to make millions over his career. He’ll make them in Toronto not elsewhere.

  17. Alec Martinez is a left shooting defenceman. Not a right hand shot as per the Athletic’s post.