July 13 2015 07:13PM
TLN's street hockey extraordinaire is still on the road with Five Hole For Food, so I'll be taking over this week's Mailbag over for Jeffler. If you're out west, you should probably go visit him in and the FFHF gang and play some hockey for a great cause. They'll be in Calgary tomorrow, Edmonton on the 15th, Victoria on the 17th, and closing things out in Vancouver on the 18th. Visit the Five Hole For Food site for full details.
Without further ado, here's the Mailbag...
July 13 2015 02:49PM
There's an old saying, "if you write about someone having an upcoming arbitration hearing, it will be settled within hours of you publishing it." Clearly that is the case for Taylor Beck and I today.
Taylor Beck avoids salary arbitration by signing a $875,000, one-year deal with #leafs.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) July 13, 2015
July 13 2015 01:05PM
The acquisition of Taylor Beck means a couple of things:
1. The Leafs have just made a huge upgrade dumping Jamie Devane for an actual player with upside
2. They now have a player who elected to go to arbitration, thus opening the Leafs up to potentially having a second buyout window (occurs after the Leafs last arbitration case.)
According to NHLNumbers.com, the Leafs are sitting on about $7.5M in salary cap space, with only Beck and Bernier left to sign and before taking into account the $5.3M in relief that comes from putting Nathan Horton on the long term injured reserve, there isn’t any reason to consider this move for the purposes of gaining cap space. Instead the need may come from the fact that the Leafs have presently exhausted the number of Standard Players Contracts and may want to gain additional space for flexibility in future deals or to take advantage of waiver claims. The Beck and Bernier signings would put the Leafs at the 50 contract maximum, with one space definitely being freed up upon the return of Cody Donaghey to the QMJHL.
July 12 2015 06:27PM
The Toronto Maple Leafs made a minor and totally nice trade this afternoon with the Nashville Predators, acquiring forward Taylor Beck in exchange for Jamie Devane.
Beck, drafted just two spots behind Devane in the third round of the 2009 Draft, is a 6'2, 207lb right winger from St. Catherines, Ontario. In 62 games with the Predators last season, Beck scored eight goals and 16 points. Drafted out of OHL Guelph, Beck was a former linemate of current Leafs centre Peter Holland.
July 10 2015 03:42PM
We're already ten days into free agency and, not totally unsurprisingly, there are a number of interesting and quality hockey players still without a contract.
Cody Franson, Christian Ehrhoff, Johnny Oduya... There's lots of decent defencemen still on the market, along with a number of options at forward like Alexander Semin, Jiri Tlusty, Curtis Glencross, Sean Bergenheim, Brad Boyes. The list goes on.
Should this impact the Leafs in any way, though? Should Toronto still be in the market for another free agent or two, despite already adding P.A. Parenteau, Shawn Matthias, Daniel Winnik, Mark Arcobello and Matt Hunwick? Would money be better spent elsewhere?
These are big questions with complex answers, so we called in our expert roundtable to set things straight...