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Leafs waive two, get an early start of the final roster cuts

We might seem them both back on the team eventually.

Toronto Maple Leafs Headshots Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images


Alex Biega and Kurtis Gabriel are on waivers today for the purpose of assignment to the AHL. Biega, 33, has not played meaningful time in the AHL since 2015-2016, and hasn’t played a full season there since the lockout year. He impressed in preseason games as a good no-nonsense seventh defender option, so should injuries strike, he seems likely to get the call.

Kurtis Gabriel was this year’s tough guy with something extra, and like last year’s, he likely will not suit up for NHL games. He played only 11 last year on a much weaker Sharks roster.

Biega could be claimed by a team that was very weak on defence and desperately needed someone to play in the NHL, but that seems unlikely. Gabriel is clearly not a player teams need to have for hockey reasons, and he’s unlikely to get any attention.

We’ll know tomorrow at 2 p.m. if they clear.

The Maple Leafs currently have 16 forwards and seven defenders on the roster, as well as the goalie tandem. They will need to cut that to 21 before 5 p.m. on Monday.