With the Maple Leafs signing T.J. Brodie to a $5 million AAV deal, they now officially have a cap crunch again.
The following shows the off-season cap space, which has a lot of room for this signing, and a projected 23-man roster:
Maple Leafs Cap Space, October 10
|Name||Cap Hit (or Qualifying Offer)||Days in NHL If 2-way||Prorated Cap Hit||Projected Roster|
|Travis Dermott - one way||874,125||874,125||874,125|
Chances are, the Leafs won’t run a 23 man roster, but the sorts of players you lop off to run short make $925,000 at most. So you can only clear up about 2⁄3 of the overage by running with 21 players.
Making this worse is that, right now, Travis Dermott and Ilya Mikheyev remain unsigned, so they are listed only at their Qualifying Offer amounts. It seems inevitable that a spare $3 million has to be removed from this roster just to stand pat. To add any new, snarly or gritty or defensively capable depth forwards or defenders, they would either need to be paid less than the players they replace, or someone else again would need to be traded.
This is a much easier problem to solve than figuring out how to pay Alex Pietrangelo, which is likely now Vegas’s problem, but it’s still a bit of a pickle.
The Leafs have until the last day of training camp — whenever that is — to figure it out.
Dubas on if Brodie signing will be #Leafs only big move of free agency: "I think so. Certainly in free agency, unless something happens on the trade front that opens things up for free agency. In free agency, this will be it for us on what people would brand a big splash."— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) October 10, 2020