Yesterday the Leafs put forward Nicolas Aubé-Kubel on waivers. Today he was claimed by the injury-plagued Washington Capitals.
Washington claims Nicolas Aubé-Kubel off waivers from Toronto.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) November 5, 2022
Aubé-Kubel spent last season in Colorado where he played with Tyson Jost and Alex Newhook most of the time in a somewhat sheltered depth role. He had replacement-level on-ice five-on-five results, but his personal shooting was good for a depth player, and he was able to drive the net.
On the Leafs he’s appeared in only six games for less than 10 minutes per game and has shot the puck a total of three six times. He has no points and his on-ice Corsi and Expected Goals are the worst on the team by a significant amount at below 40%. Whatever made his line in Colorado work, it hasn’t translated to Toronto where his limited appearances have been far below replacement level.
#Leafs Head Coach Sheldon Keefe "Loves" Nicolas Aube-Kubel as a player. Also mentions the results haven’t been what they’ve expected from him early on. #LeafsForever— Josh Anselmo (@JAns8lmo) November 5, 2022
The calculus with Aubé-Kubel was this: does he bring anything to the team Wayne Simmonds doesn’t? And the answer seemed to be no. Simmonds also makes $100,000 less per year, something that might matter down the road.
The Leafs, now have 49 SPCs, and while today’s move was necessary to reduce the active roster to 23 to add Timothy Liljegren, they also have the room to add a player should they want to.