Assessing the Maple Leafs UFA’s

Safe to say that the Toronto Maple Leafs fell short of expectations, internal or perceived, by missing the playoffs this season. And in losing 12 of 14 to crash out of the playoffs, there naturally have been questions about the makeup of the team.

For the 2014/15 season, the Toronto Maple Leafs already have $48.7 million committed to 12 players. That leaves seven UFA’s and four RFA’s for Brendan Shanahan & Co. to make a decision on. And with Shanahan already making it clear his decision making process is a meticulously thought out one, it will be very interesting to see his final analysis of the 2013/14 Maple Leafs impending UFA’s.

Here is my breakdown of the seven Toronto Maple Leafs that could be heading to NHL free agency:

*stats and salary figures sourced to NHL.com, CapGeek.com*

 

Dave Bolland: Center (6’0, 184lbs, 27 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM PPG

2014 stats

23 8 4 12 -1 24

1

NHL ranking

290th 573rd 465th 440th 405th

274th

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi % Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit Agent/Agency
2014 stats 14:27

-2

44.1% 42.8% $3,375,000

Anton Thun (MFIVE)

Dave Bolland

Bolland never really found his stride in just 23 GP for the Maple Leafs (John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports)

The Way She Goes: The Mimico native is reportedly asking for a long-term deal worth around $5-million per season, and that is wherein the issue lies for Leafs management. No doubt they’d love to keep Bolland for all his intangibles, but for a 3rd line center man who averages less than 15minutes a game, and missed significant time to injury, the Leafs have to play hard-ball with Bolland. Submit a 4-year, $4.25-million/year deal to Bolland’s camp. If he doesn’t like it, you’ve got to let him test the open market.

 [Related: Major Player Changes Coming]

Remember when Nik Kulemin had so much promise …

Nikolai Kulemin: Left Wing (6’1, 225lbs, 27 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM PPG

2014 stats

70 9 11 20 -4 24

0

NHL ranking

259th 391st 351st 606th 405th

379th

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi % Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit Agent/Agency

2014 stats

16:12 +15 41.3% 41.5% $2,800,000

Gary Greenstin (Galex Ent.)

The Way She Goes: Nik Kulemin obviously has immense talent, but you can’t affort to pay a guy north of $3-million per season and then have him go invisible for long stretches. The Maple Leafs are historically impatient with their own draft-picks, yet they’ve given Kulemin six seasons to find his game. Offer the lefty a 3-year, $3.05-million/year deal. It still gives Kuli a $250,000 raise (pretty generous considering he scored 3 more points in 22 less games during the lockout shortened season of 2012/13). If Kulemin and his agent want more money or term, the Leafs have enough depth at LW to let him walk.

 

Jay McClement: Center (6’1, 205lbs, 31 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM PPG

2014 stats

81 4 6 10 -8 32

0

NHL ranking

422nd 515th 507th 724th 311th

379th

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi % Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit

Agent/Agency

2014 stats

14:45 +12 38.7% 38.1% $1,500,000

Don Meehan

(Newport Sports)

The Way She Goes: Jay McClement is a mediocre to adequate bottom 6 forward, and that’s how the Leafs need to view McClement heading into negotiations. He’s coming off a career low in goals and points, so play hardball with McClement. Offer him a haircut with a 1-year, $1-million/year. If McClement signs, you’ve got him on the cheap. And if Jay walks, you’ve got a replacement waiting in Peter Holland (or to a lesser extent Frederik Gauthier).

 

Seven UFA’s in Toronto…Everybody Loves Raymond

 

Mason Raymond: Left Wing (6’0, 185lbs, 28 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM

PPG

2014 stats

82 19 26 45 -6 22

6

NHL ranking

102nd 142nd 111th 669th 428th

67th

 

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi% Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit

Agent/Agency

2014 stats

17:20 -13 44.2% 43.5% $1,000,000

J.P. Barry

(CAA Sports)

The Way She Goes: Mason Raymond was a low-risk high-potential signing last season, and Leafs management really got bang for their buck with the former Canuck. Raymond finished 5th in Leafs scoring with 45 points, and tied with Lupul for 4th on the Leafs in PP points. Mason is a must sign for the Blue & White, but like Bolland, the Leafs have to play hardball in their approach. Offer the Cochorane, AB native a 3-year deal at $2.5-million/year and you might be able to retain his services. Everyone loves Raymond, and I challenge you not to love the first 10 seconds of this video…

 

Troy Bodie: Right Wing (6’5, 226lbs, 29 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM

PPG

2014 stats

47 3 7 10 +6 26

0

NHL ranking

480th 485th 507th 166th 383rd

379th

 

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi% Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit

Agent/Agency

2014 stats

8:37 -1 43.0% 45.9% $600,000

N/A

The Way She Goes: This should be a pretty easy negotiation. Bodie has signed 1-year deals for the past two seasons, and that exactly what the Leafs should tender him again. 1-year with a bump to $750,000.

 

Paul Ranger: Defenseman (6’3, 210lbs, 29 years old)

GP G A PTS +/- PIM

PPG

2014 stats

53 6 8 14 -1 36

0

NHL ranking

351st 461st 442nd 440th 267th

379th

 

AVG TOI/GP GvA/TkA Differential Corsi% Fenwick % 2013/14 Cap Hit

Agent/Agency

2014 stats

17:25 -14 42.3% 41.7% $1,000,000

Joe Resnick

(Top Shelf)

Willl Paul Ranger be back with the Maple Leafs?(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

Willl Paul Ranger be back with the Maple Leafs?(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

The Way She Goes: Ranger was an interesting case. For a guy who was out of the game for a few years, he had a pretty decent return to the NHL with the Maple Leafs. Between the Marlies and the Leafs, Ranger played in 104 games last season. His 2013/14 NHL stats included 115 hits, and 72 blocked shots. 2-years at $1.25-million per.

 

Drew MacIntyre: Goalie (6’1, 190lbs, 30 years old)

GP W L OTL GAA SV %

SO

2014 NHL stats

2 0 1 0 2.53 .922

0

2014 AHL stats

48 29 15 3 2.53 .917

1

 

MINS SA SV 2013/14 Cap Hit

Agent/Agency

2014 NHL stats

95:00 51 47

$600,000

Thane Campbell

(PCI)

2014 AHL stats

2866 1450 1329

$250,000

(AHL salary)

Drew MacIntyre (Ross Bonander / THW)

Drew MacIntyre had a .917 SV% in 48 GP with the Marlies (Ross Bonander / THW)

The Way She Goes: Don’t overcomplicate this negotiation. Mac is a journeyman goalie. He’s proved that he is a competitive AHL starter, he’s got inexpensive NHL backup possibility written all over him, but he’s also easily replaceable. Offer MacIntyre a 1-year deal with a $750,000 cap hit.

Nicco Cardarelli
Nicco Cardarelli writes about all things Toronto Maple Leafs for TheHockeyWriters.com. Nicco has PxP & Color commentary experience calling IIHF, Hockey Canada, OHL and CWHL games. Follow Nicco on Instagram and Twitter @BroBehindTheMic.
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