WWYDW – If You Could Sign One Free Agent…

It seems like all we’ve been talking about lately at TLN is the Leafs’ General Manager/Head Coach search and the 2015 Entry Draft. After all, the actual Leafs roster is slightly (very) embarrassing and we’d rather just not talk about it at all.

But hey, July 1st and a new wave of free agents are on their way. And while we all largely agree that building teams through free agency is a pretty awful way of going about it, that doesn’t mean Toronto’s management group shouldn’t be very active.

That doesn’t mean that the Leafs should be in on the big names. They could very well be, but it’s not like this team really wants to actively get better so soon. The rebuilding process will be long, and this team isn’t anywhere near the point where they’re adding a top six winger or a top four defender to put themselves over the hump. No, Toronto will more likely be active in other ways.

Last year, the Leafs made a couple moves in free agency, like signing Mike Santorelli, Daniel Winnik, and David Booth. No, none of them were big name acquisitions, but Toronto made off like bandits when they flipped both Santorelli and Winnik for draft picks at the trade deadline.

The Situation

So let’s hear it in the comments below… How should the Brendan Shanahan and Mystery GM approach the free agent pool this year? 

Are you throwing money at Mike Green or Martin St. Louis? Are you handing an offer sheet to an RFA like Derek Stepan or Colin Wilson? Are you putting pen-to-paper on million-dollar role players that you can flip later in the year? ARE YOUR BRINGING BACK CODY FRANSON!?

Bonus points for specific players you’d sign, and for how much and how long you’d sign them.

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  • Joel Ward.

    He’s older and far past his prime, but wouldn’t he be great for role model for younger players.

    Also he’s a Toronto boy.

    I assume we will have to over-pay for his services, but why not?

    realistic: 3 years 13.5 million 4.5 annually

    ideally: 3 year 9 million 3 annually

  • I would love to have Franson back at 4.5 million or so per year, problem is I wouldn’t want the contract to be longer than 3 or 4 years as I could see his footspeed being a problem down the line…

    I irrationally love Santorelli, and it would be great if we could get him back at 2 million for 2 or 3 years, although I’m sure he will be able to get a contact somewhere similar to what Raymond got from Calgary this year

  • I would bring back any/all of Franson, Santorelli and Winnik, but if I had to choose one, it would be Franson for 3 years, 4 mil.

    Some one else would be maybe Derek Roy for 1.5/2 mil for 1 year. See if they can pull off some trade deadline magic.

  • I’d sign Winnik again, but not to flip. I’d like to see him paid something like 1.25M or 1.5M a season for the next three years… Give the poor man some stability.

    Ah, who am I kidding? I just want more Instagram photos of bulldogs in Leafs jerseys.

  • MatsSundin#13

    I would love to see Franson come back to TO. Can’t quite put my finger on it but to me he is the type of player that thrives when he is in a top pairing role/highly scrutinized environment like Toronto – he seems to elevate his game with the pressure on. At 27 years of age come July 1 (turning 28 in August) he can mentor the young gunz on the d core. Imagine him with Stuart Percy – streeeetch passes baby.

    As far as how long I’d sign him for, I have a preference for another 1yr $1M deal, but assuming Franson will argue for more term/money based on his performance last year I’d try to go for something like 3years $3.3-3.5M.

    • BarelyComments

      You’re speaking as if Franson isn’t a free agent this time around. I don’t mind the idea of trying to pick him back up but he’s likely going to command north of 4.5 or even north of 5 at term on the open market…

  • jasken

    First since you are in a full rebuild the best bet would be to acquire players who are looking to revitalize their careers. Players are not going to just sign if they know you have no cares for winning.

    But if your going to sign someone sign right people that are going to help your team going forward. Justin Williams, Mike Fisher are players that will instill the right attitude and will teach the younger ones on proper hockey attitude.

  • jasken

    Think we could sign Devin Setoguchi for .75 Million and put him on our top line with Kessel and Bozak?

    Maybe we could get him 30pts in 50 games and flip him for a 2nd rounder or prospect…also ruin our season but hey all ideas are good ideas in a brainstorm right?

  • Poluza

    Would it ever be possible to sign a solid UFA (say Mike Green for example) to a 7mil 1 year contract, then sell him at the deadline and retain salary? Just with the promise that you’re sending him to a contender? Or is that just seen as bad taste around the league?

    • BarelyComments

      I feel like that could be really unsettling for the next free agent to sign. Probably send a bad vibe throughout the league, if it were even possible to sign someone like Green to a 1 year

  • BarelyComments

    Well you did not exclude RFA’s so the first thing is to sign our own Nazeem Kadri. That’ doesn’t count as one..right?

    After that we sign Boston’s Adam McQuaid for 3 years at 1.75 to 2 million per year. But that’s a small signing.

    Having done that, we deal the death blow and screw Boston by offer sheeting Dougie Hamilton!!!

    4.75 million for 6 years.

    Boston is right up against the cap…only 1.56 of cap space.

    We could even go after Carl Soderberg at 2.75 million per year for 3 years. Take away another cheap decent player

    That’s my plan. We can screw with Boston royally.

  • They need to do exactly as they did last summer, sit back and let the other teams over pay and then pick through the remains. Going through the UFA list this summer there seems to be alot of players in their mid-late 30’s that should be able to be signed for a cheaper 1-2 year deal. Of course my intention would be to flip these players to contending teams at the deadline in exchange for as many draft picks and/or prospects our co-GM’s (Hunter-Dubas) can get.

    Shawn Horcoff: 2 year/$3M per
    Michal Rozsival: 2 year/$1.5M per
    Brenden Morrow: 1 year/$1.2M per
    Scott Hannan: 1 year/$1M per

    I’d also put in the time to resign Kadri asap before any offer sheets roll in.

  • I’d sign Franson 5×5
    Winnik 2×3
    Sill 1 x2
    Booth 2×1.5
    Package Bozak and Kessel for top 10 pick and prospect
    Trade Polak for 2nd
    trade Phaneuf to Edmonton for Schultz and a 2nd

    Next year’s leafs
    Jvr Kadri Brown
    Lupul Holland Panik
    Winnik Komarov Kozun
    Leivo Carrick Frattin
    Rielly Franson
    Gardiner Schultz
    Brennan Macwilliam