With the final roster decision announced today, and barring any last minute maneuvers, the Maple Leafs have their 23 men for opening day on Wednesday. We know who they are, so let’s add up what they cost.
2017 Maple Leafs opening day roster
|Tyler Bozak (A)||42||C||4,200,000||R||6' 1"||199||Mar 19, 1986||Regina, SK, CAN|
|Connor Brown||28||RW||2,100,000||R||6' 0"||185||Jan 14, 1994||Toronto, ON, CAN|
|Eric Fehr||23||C||2,000,000||R||6' 4"||208||Sep 7, 1985||Winkler, MB, CAN|
|Zach Hyman||11||C||2,250,000||R||6' 1"||212||Jun 9, 1992||Toronto, ON, CAN|
|Nazem Kadri||43||C||4,500,000||L||6' 0"||190||Oct 6, 1990||London, ON, CAN|
|Leo Komarov (A)||47||C||2,950,000||L||5' 11"||209||Jan 23, 1987||Narva, EST|
|Josh Leivo||32||LW||612,500||R||6' 2"||210||May 26, 1993||Innisfil, ON, CAN|
|Joffrey Lupul *||19||LW||5,250,000||R||6' 1"||206||Sep 23, 1983||Fort Saskatchewan, AB, CAN|
|Patrick Marleau||12||C||6,250,000||L||6' 2"||215||Sep 15, 1979||Aneroid, SK, CAN|
|Mitchell Marner||16||C||894,167||R||6' 0"||175||May 5, 1997||Markham, ON, CAN|
|Matt Martin||15||LW||2,500,000||L||6' 3"||220||May 8, 1989||Windsor, ON, CAN|
|Auston Matthews||34||C||925,000||L||6' 3"||216||Sep 17, 1997||Scottsdale, AZ, USA|
|Dominic Moore||28||C||1,000,000||L||6' 0"||192||Aug 3, 1980||Thornhill, ON, CAN|
|William Nylander||29||C||894,167||R||6' 0"||191||May 1, 1996||Calgary, AB, CAN|
|James van Riemsdyk||25||LW||4,250,000||L||6' 3"||217||May 4, 1989||Middletown, NJ, USA|
|Andreas Borgman||55||D||925,000||L||6' 0"||212||Jun 18, 1995||Stockholm, SWE|
|Connor Carrick||8||D||750,000||R||5' 10"||192||Apr 13, 1994||Orland Park, IL, USA|
|Jake Gardiner||51||D||4,050,000||L||6' 2"||200||Jul 4, 1990||Minnetonka, MN, USA|
|Ron Hainsey||2||D||3,000,000||L||6' 3"||205||Mar 24, 1981||Bolton, CT, USA|
|Martin Marincin||52||D||1,250,000||L||6' 5"||212||Feb 18, 1992||Kosice, SVK|
|Morgan Rielly (A)||44||D||5,000,000||L||6' 1"||217||Mar 9, 1994||Vancouver, BC, CAN|
|Nikita Zaitsev||22||D||4,500,000||R||6' 2"||195||Oct 29, 1991||Moscow, RUS|
|Frederik Andersen||31||G||5,000,000||-||6' 4"||230||Oct 2, 1989||Herning, DNK|
|Curtis McElhinney||35||G||850,000||-||6' 2"||200||May 23, 1983||London, ON, CAN|
Added to that number above for salaries (less Nathan Horton only, please note) is the following dead money:
2017 Maple Leafs dead money
|Phil Kessel retained salary||1,200,000|
|Tim Gleason buyout||1,333,333|
|Jared Cowen buyout||750,000|
|Bonus overages prior year||5,370,000|
The total of salaries and dead money is: 8,653,333 + 65,900,834 = 74,554,167. Without Joffrey Lupul on LTIR, the Leafs have $445,833 in space, subject to the rules about using LTIR, which we won’t delve into here. As an approximation, it makes the point that they don’t have room to call up even one player to replace someone on IR.
What they would have to do is send someone back the other way, and with only one waiver-exempt player on the team who isn’t a core player, that can become difficult. While the Leafs don’t have to designate Lupul to LTIR now, as we now know they are allowed to, they will need to in order to handle injury replacements without ending up in a bind where they have to waive someone just to make room.
The Lupul situation was never actually affecting the Leafs’ roster choices, but it would have been very difficult to handle the whole season without the option to get relief from his salary. Which is what LTIR is for, after all.
The downside to operating in LTIR space is that the projected performance bonuses for this year can total as much as $4,550,000. Unless the Leafs shed a salary to be under the cap without LTIR, all of the final bonus tally will roll over to next year.
But since the Leafs are in LTIR space anyway, they can’t get under the cap without the relief from Horton’s cap hit, then why not use some of that space provided with Lupul on LTIR as well? If they don’t, they are essentially operating well below the cap.
It’s unlikely the team will go out and add players right now, but when the deadline is looming and they know what they’re doing with their pending UFAs, they may chose to add someone as well as subtract.
All numbers are from CapFriendly, and now that the season is here, please see the Toronto Maple Leafs page there for current cap space information updated regularly.