Leafs Sign College Free Agent Casey Bailey


The Leafs already made a bit of noise last night signing Russian free agent Nikita Soshnikov.  They made some more tonight, signing 6″3′ Penn State winger Casey Bailey to a two-year entry-level contract.

This is good news, Bailey is among the most, if not the most, coveted college free agents this season. He put up 40 points in 37 games for Penn State this season, has great size, a heavy shot, and a strong defensive game.  He’s 23 so he’s not too young, but he’s certainly not old either.  Bailey along with Soshnikov only stand to reaffirm the direction that the Leafs are headed in.  More than anything, it’s always good to add players that don’t cost you a draft pick or another asset in your organization.

Unlike Soshnikov, Bailey is expected to play in games for the Leafs this season Getting games in now will burn the first year of his two-year deal, which gives him more financial flexibility sooner. This was apparently a sticking point for Bailey and his camp.

We wrote about Bailey a couple of weeks ago and thought he was a good fit then and we certainly think he’s a good fit now.  You can read up more on Bailey and other college free agents the Leafs might be interested in here.

UPDATE: We’ve added a few tweets to give you some additional insight into the newest Leafs forward:

  • Ruprecht

    No harm in signing this kid and the Russian comrade as several of the old Clidesdales will be going to the clue factory in the off season. Lots of openings next season for guys who actually want to put in an effort.

  • Ruprecht

    No harm in thinking about the 2016 draft which is only slightly over 17 months away. It appears there is a strong possibility of another generational player in this Auston Mathews kid who missed this year’s draft by 2 days. A solid skater, 6 foot one and closing in on 200 lbs. He apparently has all the tools including a high i.q. for the game. There are also a number of good defenceman prospects for the leafs to consider taking as the TANK will continue next season.

    This is the only way the leafs can finally, finally, finally get out of the quagmire of futility.

  • Meathead25

    So they sign Bailey to a 2 year deal, he plays 9 games with the Leafs and burns off his first year at the end of this season and he’s only with us for the next season before alighting for greener pastures?

    • He’ll be a restricted free agent, so no, it doesn’t necessarily mean he’s one-and-done.

      This kind of deal is preferred by the free agent because it gives them the best flexibility and an opportunity to quickly earn a raise. The fact that the Leafs were willing to do a deal like this probably got them Bailey in the first place – this could have been a sticking point for Buffalo and ultimately why he didn’t land with the Sabres as expected by pretty much everyone.