Photo Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY SPORTS
The Toronto Maple Leafs have bolstered themselves in net today, acquiring Frederik Andersen from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for two draft picks, including this year’s 30th overall pick.
The 26-year-old Andersen was originally drafted by the Carolina Hurricanes in 2010, but was allowed to re-enter the draft in 2012. The Anaheim Ducks snapped him up from there, seeing potential in his dominant 0.943 season with Frolunda of the SHL. The Dane was immediately placed in the American Hockey league, where he impressed with the Norfolk Admirals in his first North American pro season.
Andersen eventually made the jump to the NHL in 2013/14, backup up Jonas Hiller and posting an impressive 0.923 save percentage over 28 games. He hasn’t hit that mark sense, but for the past two years, he has been Anaheim’s starter, rolling at slightly above the league average in both seasons.
The Ducks were heavily speculated to be interested in moving the 6’4 puck stopper due to the rules involving next year’s expansion draft. Teams are only allowed to protect one goaltender, and the organization is believed to be very high on 22-year-old John Gibson.
Toronto will give up Pittsburgh’s first round pick (30th overall, acquired in the Phil Kessel trade), and their own second round pick in 2017 (to be determined) in the deal.
At first glance, the cost seems a little high, if not unusual for the current Leafs regime. The team has had a recent history of amassing draft picks and building towards the long term, and while they can dictate Andersen’s future with his restricted free agent status, this certainly gives a bit of a “move for the current” vibe to it. Whether that’s a move that’s worth doing is up for debate, but it’s safe to say that the Leafs aren’t looking to stick to the bottom of the standings next year.
Update (5:30 EST)
Told Leafs have agreed to a five year extension with Andersen as well. He would have been RFA July 1
— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) June 20, 2016
The Leafs have wasted no time locking up the netminder to a five-year extension. Terms aren’t yet disclosed, though it’s expected that the total cost will come in around $25 million over the length of deal.