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7 hours ago, Graeme-1 said:

All valid points, although the one part that I kind of disagree on is the "window". Given the core they have locked up or theoretically under their control for at least 5-7 years, this team could be good for a long time (think Penguins). With that said, the pressure is now ramped up to deliver right away.

It's impossible to know what the Leafs are thinking, but the current group doesn't seem to be very short-term thinkers. And that contract has a very good possibility of becoming a problem while still inside the core's window. 7.8 million is still a lot if it becomes "dead money". The question is: how confident are they that Weber decides to retire once he starts slowing down? If they're not, they better have a plan to trade the contract - probably possible given the salary structure, but it's going to cost them (like the Mason deal we just made but probably a bit more). If you have to give up a first to get rid of him in a few years, do you subtract that from his value today?

I don't know the answer. I have no doubt Weber would provide huge value for the Leafs for the next couple of seasons. But they have a potentially long-term window if they can continue drafting well to plug holes around the core, so they need to be careful about where their cap space goes in the future.

They may have a young core, but how much of it are they going to be able to keep together? Nylander's going to want 4-5M on a bridge deal or more on a long-term one. Matthews is almost certainly going to be over 10M on a long-term contract (using McDavid as a reference point; not as good a player but the cap has gone up since McDavid's deal was made). I'd guess Marner clocks in around 7M give or take. Tavares is already signed for 11M. Hainsey and Gardiner are UFA's after this year, and Marleau in 2 years. Those players may all be gone. Even with their salaries off the books, Toronto's got 2 (3 if you include Dermott) established D men signed past this season. They have 4-5 holes to fill, and if you believe you can win now (and many people have them as favorites in the East now), you can't go in with Rielly, Zaitsev, Dermott, and 4 rookies. They're going to have to trade or sign from somewhere and as I said, the UFA pool this year and next is weak. Maybe they get de Haan. But even then, that doesn't fill their need for a righty or a PP quarterback or provide any type of offence whatsoever.

So agreed, the window for Matthews and Tavares and Marner is a full 7 years, but we've seen Edm with McDavid and Draisaitl and Hall and Eberle and so on blow it because the rest of the team wasn't up to snuff. We've seen Chicago have good runs but be unable to keep their team together outside of 4-5 core players. I think in the big picture, a first-pairing D man is much more valuable to them right now than Nylander. He's the sacrificial piece here, so to me, that's the fit. If you're Toronto, you jump on a guy like Weber putting you at the top of the pack for 3-4 years instead of being close to the top but not quite there for 7. In the long run, I don't think Weber's going to cost them any more than Nylander will in 2-3 seasons anyways. Could they explore other D men? Sure. But find me a top-pairing righty who can play the powerplay who's available now and as good as Weber.

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3 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Could they explore other D men? Sure. But find me a top-pairing righty who can play the powerplay who's available now and as good as Weber.

I agree with everything you said but unfortunately, I dont see Weber as available.  I just cant see MB letting him go, which is a shame, he'd be an integral part in a rebuild.

Playing devil's advocate,  if MB  DID decide to move weber but Nylander was not on the table, do you take a package of prospects and picks from Toronto for him? 

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14 minutes ago, maas_art said:

I agree with everything you said but unfortunately, I dont see Weber as available.  I just cant see MB letting him go, which is a shame, he'd be an integral part in a rebuild.

Playing devil's advocate,  if MB  DID decide to move weber but Nylander was not on the table, do you take a package of prospects and picks from Toronto for him? 

I think probably not because I think the Habs could get a better package from someone else. Leafs 1st rounders will be at best in the early 20s for the foreseeable future, and I don't think you can make up the difference in value by just throwing volume at a trade package. The Leafs prospect pool is pretty barren now with Marner and Nylander graduated and Dermott likely not someone they'll move since I don't think they'll extend Gardiner. It's basically Liljegren and Sandin and some decent middle tier guys after that and I don't think a reasonable package could be made around them. Kapanen maybe but I just don't see there being a realistic deal.

Keep in mind that for the rest of his contract Weber is only owed 6M X 4Y, then 3M, then 1M X 3Y (which he won't actually play). I think if the Habs want to move him they could get a much better package from a team with an internal cap that would be willing to pay a premium to get a player like Weber and also save $12M in cash over the next 5 seasons. Depending on how Arizona progresses I wonder if they're an option, OEL-Weber / Chychrun-Hjalmarsson / Goligoski-Demers is a pretty fantastic top 6 and they have a lot of futures to make it work and they're kinda on the clock with Stepan, Raanta, and Hjalmarsson playing big roles. I could see that being really attractive, getting 5 years of Shea Weber for 27M in real dollars and 39M against the cap. They also took a huge swing on Hayton so you've got to wonder if they're considering moving on from Strome, I wonder if there's a deal to be made around Weber for Strome++.

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I see that TO got creative with their signing of JT. With all of the "signing bonuses", only the salary will count against the cap. 

From Pierre LeBrun:

"Correction on Year 2 signing bonus, it's $14.99M, not $15.25M. So official breakdown reads like this: Year 1, $650k salary, $15.25M sb; Year 2, $910k salary, $14.99 M sb; Year 3, $910k salary, $11.09M sb; Year 4, $910k salary, $8.44M sb; Years 5-7, $910k salary, $7.04M sb each yr

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37 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

I see that TO got creative with their signing of JT. With all of the "signing bonuses", only the salary will count against the cap. 

From Pierre LeBrun:

"Correction on Year 2 signing bonus, it's $14.99M, not $15.25M. So official breakdown reads like this: Year 1, $650k salary, $15.25M sb; Year 2, $910k salary, $14.99 M sb; Year 3, $910k salary, $11.09M sb; Year 4, $910k salary, $8.44M sb; Years 5-7, $910k salary, $7.04M sb each yr

ultimately though its still $11m against the cap over the term, right? I dont see how small salary + big signing bonus makes that much of a difference on the cap hit? 

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1 hour ago, Noob616 said:

I think probably not because I think the Habs could get a better package from someone else. Leafs 1st rounders will be at best in the early 20s for the foreseeable future, and I don't think you can make up the difference in value by just throwing volume at a trade package. The Leafs prospect pool is pretty barren now with Marner and Nylander graduated and Dermott likely not someone they'll move since I don't think they'll extend Gardiner. It's basically Liljegren and Sandin and some decent middle tier guys after that and I don't think a reasonable package could be made around them. Kapanen maybe but I just don't see there being a realistic deal.

Keep in mind that for the rest of his contract Weber is only owed 6M X 4Y, then 3M, then 1M X 3Y (which he won't actually play). I think if the Habs want to move him they could get a much better package from a team with an internal cap that would be willing to pay a premium to get a player like Weber and also save $12M in cash over the next 5 seasons. Depending on how Arizona progresses I wonder if they're an option, OEL-Weber / Chychrun-Hjalmarsson / Goligoski-Demers is a pretty fantastic top 6 and they have a lot of futures to make it work and they're kinda on the clock with Stepan, Raanta, and Hjalmarsson playing big roles. I could see that being really attractive, getting 5 years of Shea Weber for 27M in real dollars and 39M against the cap. They also took a huge swing on Hayton so you've got to wonder if they're considering moving on from Strome, I wonder if there's a deal to be made around Weber for Strome++.

Good thinking.

I still wonder if the answer is Ottawa.   Weber  for Karlsson.   You get a younger, better player and although he's not as young as Id like for a rebuild, he's probably still very good once Kotkaniemi/Poehling etc all are on our roster.  

Ottawa would get a #1 Defensman in return who is way cheaper in actual salary than the cap hit. Its a match made in heaven for Melnyck.  Even Mb saves face because  Subbar for Weber = bad.  but Weber for Karlson = very good, so ultimately its  Subban for Karlsson which is a.o.k. 

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Some conflicting info about Dehaan.   It sounds like there are 7-8 teams interested in him (Montreal is one of them) and some say he's narrowed down his choices to 4 but others say its still open.

Initially it sounds like he's actually looking for a 1 year deal - much like Radulov did - so that he can inflate his value after an injury filled season (read: none of the long term deals he's been offered are good enough).   

One rumour is that he'd be keen to play that 1 year next to Weber but that we may not be able to guarantee thats where he'll play on the roster.

 

I highly doubt he'll sign with us (especially since it sounds like Marc Bergevin gave him one of his famous "take it or leave it" offers) but you never know.   As much criticism as Weber takes, i can see a lot of LD loving the idea of playing next to him.  

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40 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

I see that TO got creative with their signing of JT. With all of the "signing bonuses", only the salary will count against the cap. 

 
2 minutes ago, maas_art said:

ultimately though its still $11m against the cap over the term, right? I dont see how small salary + big signing bonus makes that much of a difference on the cap hit? 

Yep, @maas_art is right. Signing bonuses don't make any difference to cap hit. Cap hit is just total dollars owed divided by number of years. All that matters is Tavares signed a contract that owes him 77M over 7 years so his cap hit is 11M. Same with Price's deal, he just got a 13M signing bonus on July 1st and will only get 2M salary throughout the season, but his cap hit is still 10.5M because what matters is simply 84M/8Y. Weber's contract is similar, the first 6 years were heavy on signing bonus and he's now into the phase of just 6+6+6+6+3+1+1+1 in just salary. But what matters is it was a 110M deal over 14 years, so it's a 7.857M deal. McDavid has a similar deal too which is mostly SB, and lots of top players have significant portions of their contracts as signing bonus.

There's a few reasons they do this signing bonus stuff. For the player it's just time value of money, 15.6M today is worth a lot more than 300k a week for the whole year, Tavares likely already has significant financial assets and investments and he can dump 15.6M into whatever financial assets he owns and start earning interest for the entire year instead of building up that money over the year. At a 10% interest rate (average return for the S&P 500), that 15.6M turns into 17.2M over the course of a year and down the line getting a head start on compound interest makes a big difference (plus only 50% of those capital gains are taxable in Canada so it's better than getting 17.2M in direct salary). Signing bonuses are also buyout-proof, a buyout pays out 2/3 of the salary portion but you have to fully pay out any signing bonuses so the player loses almost no money in a buyout if their contract is almost entirely signing bonus. They're also lockout-proof, Tavares just got 15.6M signing bonus this year, and will get 14.99M next July 1, and 11.09M the next July 1. So if there's a lockout in either 2019 or 2020 Tavares doesn't need to worry since he's already received most of his pay and will only be missing out on 900k in salary. 

For the teams, they generally would prefer not to do this stuff (because of the buyout/lockout proof stuff I just mentioned), but rich teams can use signing bonus stuff to bargain for high-end players and beat out less rich teams. Weber's contract is from Philadelphia sending him an offer sheet, and they used all this signing bonus stuff to make it as painful as possible for a small market team like Nashville to match. Imagine being Nashville and your #1 D just signed an offer sheet that owes him 13M the second he signs it and a whopping $80M in real dollars over the first 6 years of the contract. Philadelphia can handle that kind of money, and they hoped Nashville couldn't. Ultimately I think it was a big factor in the Subban trade, when they made the trade on June 26, 2016, they were two days away from having to pay Weber a 13M bonus and instead paid Subban at 4.5M bonus on July 1 (Subban's contract is also more biased towards salary instead of SB which helps Nashville by spreading out the cost). 

With Tavares it's not quite the same because Tampa/Boston/San Jose/Dallas could have all afforded to give him the same contract, but it's still a factor. The Leafs (and Habs/Rangers) are substantially richer than every other team in the league. LA/Boston/Detroit/Chicago/Pittsburgh/Washington etc are all rich teams but money is still a factor to some extent. The Habs/Leafs/Rangers can drop 15.6M on Tavares on one day before he plays a single game and not even bat an eye. All the other teams that were in on him could have afforded the contract and probably offered similar 77M+ deals for him, but I wonder if the Leafs had the most aggressive structure, this contract pays Tavares just over 44M in the first three years and I wonder if that was more aggressive than other teams. 

 

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47 minutes ago, maas_art said:

Good thinking.

I still wonder if the answer is Ottawa.   Weber +  for Karlsson.   You get a younger, better player and although he's not as young as Id like for a rebuild, he's probably still very good once Kotkaniemi/Poehling etc all are on our roster.  

Ottawa would get a #1 Defensman in return who is way cheaper in actual salary than the cap hit. Its a match made in heaven for Melnyck. 

That would be incredible. I feel like it's really unlikely though, if they're so afraid of moving Mike Hoffman within the division that they took a bath on the return for him I can't see Karlsson going within the division and I think the fanbase would be absolutely livid at moving Karlsson for Weber's age 33-37 seasons (I expect Weber to retire after the 2022-23 seasons when his salary drops to 1M for 3 years until 2026).

But yeah the more I think about it the more I think that's the only way he gets moved (internal cap team) that will pay a premium for that 12M in real dollar savings. That's not a trivial amount of money to save off your payroll for a top pair guy if you have an internal cap. Off the top of my head the Islanders, Ducks, Coyotes, Blue Jackets, Devils, Hurricanes, Senators, Avalanche, Stars, Blues, and Panthers that seem to have an internal cap. There are some interesting pieces that could be part of a deal with some of those teams. 

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26 minutes ago, Noob616 said:

That would be incredible. I feel like it's really unlikely though, if they're so afraid of moving Mike Hoffman within the division that they took a bath on the return for him I can't see Karlsson going within the division and I think the fanbase would be absolutely livid at moving Karlsson for Weber's age 33-37 seasons (I expect Weber to retire after the 2022-23 seasons when his salary drops to 1M for 3 years until 2026).

But yeah the more I think about it the more I think that's the only way he gets moved (internal cap team) that will pay a premium for that 12M in real dollar savings. That's not a trivial amount of money to save off your payroll for a top pair guy if you have an internal cap. Off the top of my head the Islanders, Ducks, Coyotes, Blue Jackets, Devils, Hurricanes, Senators, Avalanche, Stars, Blues, and Panthers that seem to have an internal cap. There are some interesting pieces that could be part of a deal with some of those teams. 

Yup. But only if MB is smart enough to see that Shea Weber is a diminishing asset.  

I have no doubt that some teams would pay as highly for him now as he they would say 2 years ago, but others would offer less as each year goes by.  As you said, he offers a great situation for a cash poor, cap rich team (and he's not a salary dump either, he's still a great player) but i think thats still going to be less of a return than what you'd get with a team that still values him as the 'man mountain.'

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- Agree with Noob, if Toronto doesn't make Nylander available, then no deal. There are no other blue chip prospects in their organization, and the late 1st rounder(s) would not be enough either. We can get a better deal elsewhere.

- Signing bonuses count against the cap. Again, agreed with what Noob said. The other points I'll add on though: one, signing bonuses are guaranteed even if there's a lockout, so it's one way players get protection against possible work stoppages in the coming years. Two, performance bonuses only count once they're paid out and can be carried over... so Plekanec for example, earns 2.25M against the cap, but if he plays X number of games or gets X number of goal/points, his earnings go up. The Habs can count that against their cap, but if they go over the allotted cap space, they can roll over some of the performance bonuses into next year's cap. Only certain types of players qualify for performance bonuses, though, which is why few players have them.

- Not sure Karlsson for Weber makes sense for either team. I wouldn't make that deal unless Karlsson was re-signed long-term. Neither team has a chance at winning next year, with or without that trade. So both teams want to make a deal to get younger skill. I don't see a fit there. Even if Karlsson is better than Weber now, he doesn't really fit the new window we should be looking at. I'd rather have a Seth Jones or Goestisbehere or so on.

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15 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

They may have a young core, but how much of it are they going to be able to keep together? Nylander's going to want 4-5M on a bridge deal or more on a long-term one. Matthews is almost certainly going to be over 10M on a long-term contract (using McDavid as a reference point; not as good a player but the cap has gone up since McDavid's deal was made). I'd guess Marner clocks in around 7M give or take. Tavares is already signed for 11M. Hainsey and Gardiner are UFA's after this year, and Marleau in 2 years. Those players may all be gone. Even with their salaries off the books, Toronto's got 2 (3 if you include Dermott) established D men signed past this season. They have 4-5 holes to fill, and if you believe you can win now (and many people have them as favorites in the East now), you can't go in with Rielly, Zaitsev, Dermott, and 4 rookies. They're going to have to trade or sign from somewhere and as I said, the UFA pool this year and next is weak. Maybe they get de Haan. But even then, that doesn't fill their need for a righty or a PP quarterback or provide any type of offence whatsoever.

So agreed, the window for Matthews and Tavares and Marner is a full 7 years, but we've seen Edm with McDavid and Draisaitl and Hall and Eberle and so on blow it because the rest of the team wasn't up to snuff. We've seen Chicago have good runs but be unable to keep their team together outside of 4-5 core players.

I won't pretend to know what's going on with Edmonton (they are like the anti-Vegas), but we've seen with numerous teams (Penguins being the best example) with a good core you can lose guys and be okay. Obviously you have to continue drafting reasonably well, make some smart trades & signings, etc - 2-3 guys can't win a cup - but I just wouldn't consider a window closing because they're going to lose a few mid-tier players.

 

15 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

I think in the big picture, a first-pairing D man is much more valuable to them right now than Nylander. He's the sacrificial piece here, so to me, that's the fit. If you're Toronto, you jump on a guy like Weber putting you at the top of the pack for 3-4 years instead of being close to the top but not quite there for 7. In the long run, I don't think Weber's going to cost them any more than Nylander will in 2-3 seasons anyways. Could they explore other D men? Sure. But find me a top-pairing righty who can play the powerplay who's available now and as good as Weber.

No doubt, Weber+ for Nylander would be a smart trade today. The problem is the length of Weber's contract - things would be much better if he was a free agent in 3-4 years. While it's unlikely Weber plays for 1 million a season the last 4 years of his deal, LTIR is a much bigger concern (many players on long-term deals seem to mysteriously or not so mysteriously end up there). While many fans think of LTIR as "no cap hit", the truth is more complicated (a Leafs site coincidentally explains LTIR well: https://mapleleafsnation.com/2016/05/07/ltir-isn-t-free-cap-space-and-the-leafs-need-to-be-cautious-in-using-it/).

The question I can't answer is if they'd demand "compensation" for that downstream risk? MB clearly didn't, but Dubas seems a bit smarter than him.

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FWIW

http://www.sportingnews.com/ca/nhl/news/john-tavares-fit-toronto-maple-leafs-contract-details-auston-matthews-mitch-marner-william-nylander/l1dh3tr1jze61nvcvdlvefx4e

 

There is also another question that is going to get asked here: How much do the Maple Leafs really need to do to their defense? There is no question that it could use some upgrades, but does it require such an upgrade that they would have to part with one of their franchise forwards to fix it? Jake Gardiner had a dreadful performance in the Maple Leafs’ season-ending Game 7 loss in Boston, but that does not define him as a player. He is good. As is Morgan Rielly. 

I’ve always been of the belief that a top-pairing, 28-minute-per-night defenseman who can play in every situation is a necessity to win the Stanley Cup. But if recent NHL history has shown us anything, it’s that there is more than one way to accomplish things.

The Penguins won the 2016-17 Stanley Cup without Kris Letang. The expansion Golden Knights were in the Stanley Cup Final this year with a mostly patchwork group on defense. The Capitals had a pretty good defense and invested a lot of money in the blue line, but they didn’t exactly have a Chris Pronger or Scott Niedermayer or Drew Doughty or Erik Karlsson at the top of it. 

If you are a part of the “Toronto should trade William Nylander or Mitch Marner for a top defenseman” brigade, let me ask you one question: How many examples of such a trade taking place and working out as planned can you really think of? The Ryan Johansen-for-Seth Jones swap certainly stands out, but that was really only made possible because Nashville was a team that had multiple top-pairing defenseman to trade. 

Like top-line scorers, most teams are not trading that kind of a defenseman unless a unique set of circumstances presents itself. It is more likely to backfire than accomplish what you hope it will. Nobody wants to be the team that trades Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson. 

What all the recent teams that made the Cup Final without that sort of front-line defender had in common was balanced scoring throughout their lineup that made it difficult for opponents to match up against and strong goaltending.  

The Maple Leafs definitely have the balanced scoring, which means a lot of their success (or failure) will come down to Frederik Andersen in net. Andersen is a fine goalie and is consistently just a touch above league average when it comes to his performance. The biggest issue the Maple Leafs might have with him, however, is that they have kind of run him into the ground the past two years and probably have not managed his minutes enough so that he is not completely burned out when it comes to the playoffs

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28 minutes ago, Regis22 said:

FWIW

http://www.sportingnews.com/ca/nhl/news/john-tavares-fit-toronto-maple-leafs-contract-details-auston-matthews-mitch-marner-william-nylander/l1dh3tr1jze61nvcvdlvefx4e

 

There is also another question that is going to get asked here: How much do the Maple Leafs really need to do to their defense? There is no question that it could use some upgrades, but does it require such an upgrade that they would have to part with one of their franchise forwards to fix it? Jake Gardiner had a dreadful performance in the Maple Leafs’ season-ending Game 7 loss in Boston, but that does not define him as a player. He is good. As is Morgan Rielly. 

I’ve always been of the belief that a top-pairing, 28-minute-per-night defenseman who can play in every situation is a necessity to win the Stanley Cup. But if recent NHL history has shown us anything, it’s that there is more than one way to accomplish things.

The Penguins won the 2016-17 Stanley Cup without Kris Letang. The expansion Golden Knights were in the Stanley Cup Final this year with a mostly patchwork group on defense. The Capitals had a pretty good defense and invested a lot of money in the blue line, but they didn’t exactly have a Chris Pronger or Scott Niedermayer or Drew Doughty or Erik Karlsson at the top of it. 

If you are a part of the “Toronto should trade William Nylander or Mitch Marner for a top defenseman” brigade, let me ask you one question: How many examples of such a trade taking place and working out as planned can you really think of? The Ryan Johansen-for-Seth Jones swap certainly stands out, but that was really only made possible because Nashville was a team that had multiple top-pairing defenseman to trade. 

Like top-line scorers, most teams are not trading that kind of a defenseman unless a unique set of circumstances presents itself. It is more likely to backfire than accomplish what you hope it will. Nobody wants to be the team that trades Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson. 

What all the recent teams that made the Cup Final without that sort of front-line defender had in common was balanced scoring throughout their lineup that made it difficult for opponents to match up against and strong goaltending.  

The Maple Leafs definitely have the balanced scoring, which means a lot of their success (or failure) will come down to Frederik Andersen in net. Andersen is a fine goalie and is consistently just a touch above league average when it comes to his performance. The biggest issue the Maple Leafs might have with him, however, is that they have kind of run him into the ground the past two years and probably have not managed his minutes enough so that he is not completely burned out when it comes to the playoffs

This is an important point. We all like to think we know what an optimal team looks like (I remember years ago we'd come up with all sorts of Malkin to Montreal trade suggestions on the basis that having two #1 centers was a waste and Pittsburgh needed help on the wing and defense). But we've seen teams can be successful investing primarily in defnese (Nashville), primarily offense (Pittsburgh and at least accidentally Vegas), or having a balance (Kings, Blackhawks, etc).

I'm not convinced that Toronto without any defensive upgrades isn't already the cup favorite. With that said, I still do think Nylander for Weber would be a positive in the short-term. But they might not be in the "have to upgrade defense" position everyone thinks anymore than Pittsburgh was in the "have to trade centers for help elsewhere" position years ago.

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3 hours ago, Graeme-1 said:

This is an important point. We all like to think we know what an optimal team looks like (I remember years ago we'd come up with all sorts of Malkin to Montreal trade suggestions on the basis that having two #1 centers was a waste and Pittsburgh needed help on the wing and defense). But we've seen teams can be successful investing primarily in defnese (Nashville), primarily offense (Pittsburgh and at least accidentally Vegas), or having a balance (Kings, Blackhawks, etc).

I'm not convinced that Toronto without any defensive upgrades isn't already the cup favorite. With that said, I still do think Nylander for Weber would be a positive in the short-term. But they might not be in the "have to upgrade defense" position everyone thinks anymore than Pittsburgh was in the "have to trade centers for help elsewhere" position years ago.

Nylander for Weber or Karlsson? 

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10 hours ago, kinot-2 said:

Nylander for Weber or Karlsson? 

There's no disputing Karlsson would be way better on ice than Weber (although Weber may actually suit their defense better at least for a couple of years) but Weber brings a $7.7m cap hit - Karlsson is going to be looking for $10-11m thats a pretty big difference on a team that will be in cap trouble pretty soon. 

35 minutes ago, habs1952 said:

Thread title should be 'Free Agent Fizzle'.

This. 

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Toronto may not "have" to upgrade their defence, just like we don't either. We could go all in on trading Pacioretty and futures for centers, but it likely isn't a great plan. If you read the stuff from Toronto media and fans, a lot of them talk about needing to shore up the D. Specifically, they talk a lot about needing a top pairing righty to play with Reilly and be effective on the PP. Again, Weber fits that bill to a tee. Yes, his contract is an issue long-term, but like I said, if you're a real threat for a Cup, you should be willing to go all in to get a 3-4 year window out of Weber and then deal with the downstream stuff later. And like I said, don't discount how much Babcock loves him.

You can't buy out or bury Weber because of the structure of his contract, but the Leafs could easily keep him for 4-5 years and then discard him by trading him to a team like Phoenix or Ottawa or so on. Teams like that who run low on the cap (especially with it going up almost every year) would probably love to have a guy on a 7.8M cap whom they only have to pay 1M. If he doesn't choose to retire, I don't think it will be hard to trade Weber in 5 years, even if the return will be negligible.

As for Karlsson, sure he's a better player heads up compare to Weber now, BUT I'll ask these two questions:

1. Would you take Karlsson over Weber knowing he would walk after the last year on his contract? Would you take him if you knew he was willing to re-sign with you but that he wanted 13M a season for 8 years to stay?

2. Would you rather trade for Weber or trade for Karlsson with Ryan attached, for the same return?

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6 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

Toronto may not "have" to upgrade their defence, just like we don't either. We could go all in on trading Pacioretty and futures for centers, but it likely isn't a great plan. If you read the stuff from Toronto media and fans, a lot of them talk about needing to shore up the D. Specifically, they talk a lot about needing a top pairing righty to play with Reilly and be effective on the PP. Again, Weber fits that bill to a tee. Yes, his contract is an issue long-term, but like I said, if you're a real threat for a Cup, you should be willing to go all in to get a 3-4 year window out of Weber and then deal with the downstream stuff later. And like I said, don't discount how much Babcock loves him.

You can't buy out or bury Weber because of the structure of his contract, but the Leafs could easily keep him for 4-5 years and then discard him by trading him to a team like Phoenix or Ottawa or so on. Teams like that who run low on the cap (especially with it going up almost every year) would probably love to have a guy on a 7.8M cap whom they only have to pay 1M. If he doesn't choose to retire, I don't think it will be hard to trade Weber in 5 years, even if the return will be negligible.

I would bet dollars for donuts that somewhere in the last couple of years of his contract Nashville would happily take him back. Not as a reclamation project but so that they could work out how to put him on LTIR or similar should he not wish to play for $1m on those 40 year old bones. 

And in the meantime Im positive a cap rich, cash poor team would want him.  I dont think moving Weber will ever be a problem, its that his asset will diminish as the contract progresses.

Unfortunately, the only way I see MB trading weber is if we're a clear winner. Not for futures, not for picks. I think MB's ego and pride are too great.  He would have to be able to get back some huge prize - #1 centre or defensman - and say "see, see how much shea weber is worth?? this is why we traded PK for him."  MMW, his ego and stubbornness will kill this rebuild. 

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10 minutes ago, Regis22 said:

The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed winger Anthony Duclair to a one-year, $650,000 contract, according to multiple reports

Reports also hint that the Habs were in the running until the end, but that MB would only offer Duclair a two-way deal with no guaranteed NHL money, so he went with Columbus.

Clb also re-signs Boone Jenner to a 4 year deal.

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