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Leafs Acquire Riley Nash From Columbus For Conditional 7th

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The gritty forward likely won’t appear until the playoffs, if at all.

NHL: Columbus Blue Jackets at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced tonight that they made a trade:

The first striking thing about Nash is that right now, he’s not playing at all.

That makes Nash’s cap hit—$2.75M—very manageable, since if Nash returns for G1 of the playoffs there’s no longer a salary cap to worry about. Pierre LeBrun has some additional notes on potential cap shenanigans:

Regarding the player himself: Nash, who will turn 32 next month, is a gritty forward with a solid history on the defensive side of the puck. Evolving Hockey rates his contributions like so:

How much Nash has left in the tank is an open question at this stage, even beyond his health. Nash has occasionally played centre, which may be relevant to the Leafs wanting to acquire him. His offence, which was limited to begin with, is mostly gone at this point (he has 2G, 5A in 37 GP this year) and this doesn’t seem like the kind of add that’s going to bump Alex Galchenyuk out of the top six. Still, Nash does bring some of the grit element that Kyle Dubas has seemed to prize in the past year or so.

The price is very modest, even if the pick does promote to a sixth (which is barely different from a seventh in value anyway.) This isn’t the big upgrade that Dubas has been expected to make, and he might still hunt for bigger game, but Nash may be an interesting depth addition as the playoffs approach.

Welcome to Toronto, Riley!


The assumption on the cap shuffle: