Rosen is still on an ELC at $925,000, and he would have had arbitration rights this summer. He turns 25 in February, and has played most of the last two seasons on the Marlies top defensive pair after looking very, very close to NHL-calibre in two training camps.
He has appeared in four regular-season NHL games and 88 AHL games. He was notoriously snakebit on scoring last year until he blasted open in the Marlies’ Calder Cup run for 11 points in 16 games. So far this season, he has 19 points in 24 games on the Marlies and is notching points at a rate faster than a lot of the forwards on the top lines.
If he were to be called up to the NHL, he would require waivers after 56 games played to be sent back down, so he is a waiver-exempt option for the Leafs for the rest of this regular season. He does not lose that exemption until after those 56 games are played or two more full seasons of play.
A two-year deal at this amount makes him a very, very attractive option to be a seventh defender on the Leafs next season when every scrap of cap space counts. The waiver exemption is just a very nice bonus.
We’ll update with any further details on the contract.