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The Toronto Maple Leafs announced on Sunday that they have traded defenceman Brett Lebda and forward Robert Slaney to the Nashville Predators for forward Matthew Lombardi and defenceman Cody Franson. Also included in the trade is a conditional fourth round draft pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.
According to James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail, the conditional fourth rounder goes as follows: If Lombardi plays in 60 games, the Predators will get the fourth round pick.
The reason the number was set at 60 is that Lombardi had concussion issues last season that forced him to miss 80 regular season games and all 12 playoff games. In 446 career regular season games, the 29-year-old has 89 goals and 147 assists to go along with a plus-27 rating.
Not many people are expecting Lombardi to play much this season, but if he does, he will be a nice fit on one of the top two lines and penalty kill unit. He comes with a cap hit of $3.5 million, which is reasonable as long as he can get back to the way he used to play.
Franson, a defenceman that plays on the right side, is certainly NHL ready at age 23. He had eight goals, 21 assists and a plus/minus rating of plus-10 in 80 games last season.
Since Franson regularly plays on the right side of the ice and so do Dion Phaneuf and Luke Schenn, some people are saying this trade makes Mike Komisarek that much more vulnerable to get moved. However, Komisarek still has a modified no-movement clause that could get in the way of a trade.
Leaving the Leafs is Lebda and Slaney. The former played in just 41 games for the Leafs last season, scoring one goal and three assists while going minus-14. Slaney meanwhile, played in 61 games for the Reading Royals of the ECHL last season, where he scored seven goals and seventeen assists. He also collected one point, an assist, in nine game with the Toronto Marlies.
The Maple Leafs said they would be very active in the trade market this off-season, and this transaction only backs that up. Expect more from the Maple Leafs over the next little while, as the season is still more than two months away.
Thanks to CapGeek.com for the cap hit information.