Frazer McLaren Placed on Waivers

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
March 03 2014 10:40AM

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As per TSN's Bob McKenzie, Toronto Maple Leafs winger/enforcer Frazer McLaren has been placed on waivers. The 26 year old Winnipeg native has no points and 72 penalty minutes (6 fights) in 26 games played this season.

Why Now?

You're probably super excited right now, because this totally means a changing of the guard, right? No more valuing of intimidation over skill! Don't get too ahead of yourself though. Here are the realities of the situation.

  • The Leafs are very tight against the cap, which makes activating David Bolland off of IR and having some room to make adjustments at the trade deadline a bit problematic. Especially with Peter Holland still in the lineup, waiving somebody is the best option.
  • Trevor Smith and Troy Bodie were the expected waiver casualties if it got to that point, but both have shown themselves to be quality contributors to the team when in the lineup, and Bodie has shown no hesitance to drop the gloves as well. Both would likely be claimed by other NHL teams; McLaren may slip through the cracks.
  • Of the two pure enforcers on the team, the Leafs value Colton Orr over Fraser McLaren. I'm not quite sure why; McLaren is a quicker skater, and seems more responsible positionally (though it's a thinnest kid at fat camp scenario). He comes at a $225,000 lower cap hit. He even fights more often and more effectively, winning 4 of 8 scraps over Orr's 1 of 6 (all figures from HockeyFights.com). With that said, Orr has played nearly twice as many games. 
  • By the way, it's Colton Orr's birthday.

To be honest, if it were up to me, Orr would be the one going through the process, but that's ultimately the decision that the Leafs have made. It gives the Leafs cap space and might give a more skilled player a chance to show his ability

As for McLaren's impact on the Marlies if he clears, I wouldn't hold my breath in hopes of him being a superstar. In his last 86 AHL games, he has 2 goals and 4 assists to go with 231 penalty minutes. There's a plethora of guys on that team who can drop the mitts and contribute, so I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't play all too much at this level either. Who knows though; maybe he can surprise.

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I bring news about the Toronto Marlies, opinions about the Toronto Maple Leafs, and a bunch of ridiculous thoughts about everything else.
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#1 WesternDP
March 03 2014, 12:10PM
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I had a feeling this would happen when the games became really important.

"Of the two pure enforcers on the team, the Leafs value Colton Orr over Fraser McLaren. I'm not quite sure why..."

I don't think Orr is healthy enough to be put on waivers, so they had to waive McLaren

Interesting coincidence. Calgary Flames' Kevin Westgarth got knocked out on the weekend:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ID26iClPumI

Having lost an enforcer, I wonder if it is prearranged that Burke will pick up McLaren off of waivers?

McLaren was dressed in that Vacouver game and did nothing to settle the score after Burrows stirred things up with Kessel. He had the opportunity in a 3-1 game. He didn't do his job, so he is no deterant. He should have taken an instigator against somebody. He might have saved his job.

Finally, the Leafs have a really nice option in young heavyweight, Jamie Devane. Devane had two goals in the preseason and three so far with the Marlies. He's a good fighter and a far better hockey player than McLaren.

Call up Devane if you need extra toughness. He is waiver exempt.

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#2 Bertly83
March 03 2014, 11:05AM
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BYE BYE FML!!!

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#3 leafer2013
March 03 2014, 01:19PM
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Mclaren will get picked up because unlike most enforcers he has some bottom 6 level hockey skill.

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#4 STAN
March 03 2014, 04:52PM
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Up against 'the cap'? C'mon. Cap schmap. This is THE LEAFS. Burkie's team. Burkie's bulked up layer of management that is so fat it couldn't find the abacas to do simple mathematics.

If this roster doesn't surpass last season's effort, Nonis & Co. are the only ones to blame, even though some Carlyle decisions have been very peculiar.

All things considered Orr should have been waived, but (as mentioned) Nonis and his boys have boxed themselves into a corner.

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