On the night where winger Dmytro Timashov scored his first NHL goal, and seems to have cemented himself as the depth player of choice, HNIC’s Elliotte Friedman reported that the Leafs are opening to moving Nic Petan if they can find a deal that will give him more playing time.
When Zach Hyman is ready to return, which will likely be soon, the Leafs will have to reduce their roster to make room for his cap hit. Timashov, with a very inexpensive deal at $694,444 (with an additional $70,000 in performance bonuses which currently do not count against the cap) has claimed the fourth line left wing job for now. When Hyman bumps Mikheyev and Moore down the lineup, that might leave either Timashov or Nick Shore as the odd man out, but there will be no room, even in the press box, for Petan.
The only roadblock to a trade is that the Leafs are at 49 of 50 allowed SPCs, so they won’t want to take back contracts, not even for AHLers. A backup goalie, now, that they might want to talk about.
Next week we’ll cover the LTIR and IR implications of the coming cap crunch. But for now the simple version of the story is that the Leafs won’t be keeping more than one player in the press box once Hyman is back.
Also discussed on air tonight was the purported interest by the Leafs (and the Habs) in Konstantin Okulov, a 24-year-old forward for CSKA in the KHL. He has 13 points in 17 games so far on a team that never loses.
Confidential to Chris Johnston: It’s CSKA, not Red Army. The Red Army hasn’t been the Red Army since the Soviet Union was the Soviet Union and CSKA is a hockey club with historical ties to the old Red Army team.