Leafs trade Scott Harrington, Conditional Pick for Kerby Rychel

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Photo Credit: Aaron Doster/USA TODAY SPORTS

The Toronto Maple Leafs might be done at the draft, but that doesn’t mean they’re finished taking care of business in Buffalo. Shortly after the last selection was made, the blue and white finished off a deal which sent Scott Harrington and a conditional draft pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets for 21-year-old forward Kerby Rychel.

Rychel was drafted 19th overall by the Blue Jackets in 2013. Born in California but raised in Southern Ontario, he split his time between the Blue Jackets and Lake Erie Monsters this season, scoring 27 points in 37 AHL games and 9 in 32 with the big club. Part of the reason for Rychel’s lower production with the big club was the lack of opportunity he was given; the 21-year-old averaged just nine and a half minutes per game.

Rychel’s possession numbers were also on the weaker end this year, with a -2.0% CF Rel, but he started the bulk of his shifts in the defensive zone. He was a part of the Lake Erie Monsters team that won this year’s Calder Cup but played in a more limited role to make room for Columbus’ more valued prospects.

After all, his departure had been a long time coming. Rychel made a trade request at the beginning of the season as he didn’t feel he was given the opportunity to succeed in the Blue Jackets organization.

Heading back the other way is Scott Harrington. The Leafs acquired the 22-year-old defenceman less than a year ago in the Phil Kessel trade, and while he looked like a potentially useful project in the pre and early season, he ultimately moved down to the Marlies for the sake of his development. Harrington struggled to show up on the scoresheet in his 15 games with the team, putting up just three points before suffering an upper-body injury which ended his season in early January.

Toronto also gives up a 5th round pick if Harrington were to not make the Blue Jackets, get placed on waivers, and get subsequentially claimed.

Overall, this looks like a very good opportunity for the Maple Leafs. Rychel is a bit of a project, but has waiver eligibility for a few more years and might be willing to accept further development in an organization with a different plan in place. If he pans out, the Leafs will be getting a decent sized, feisty winger who can dish around the puck.

    • Jeremy Ian

      and loads of cap space and the opportunity
      to draft first overall-(as Kessels production probably would of propelled us out of 30th overall).
      And as well you forgot about the grief of paying Kessels contract when he is no longer worth 8 million a season.
      As well perhaps the opportunity that cap relief brings to sign Stamkoes.

      so perhaps
      Kessel for:

      Kasperi Kapanen, Fredrick Andersson, and Kerby Rychel and 8mill of Stamkoes 10.5 mill

      hopefully will be more accurate.

    • Harte of a Lion

      Spalling and Polak brought a San José 2nd in 2016 and 17 and with the 2016 pick they drafted CARL GRUNDSTRÖM.
      So the trade ends up Kessel for Kapanen, Andersen, Rychel, Carl Grundström.
      The 2017 San José 2nd was sent to Anaheim as part of the Andersen trade.

      It’s remarkable how Lou is able to move things around for the benefit of the Leafs. Kessel for Matthews, a #1 goalie plus two more first round prospects with Rychel selected at 19 and Kapanen at 22.

      Building foundations, the Leafs now have 10 prospects 25 and under who were selected in the 1st round, six of them selected 1 through 8, another selected 2nd who just turned 27 and two old guys at 31 & 32 respectively.

      13 roster players selected within the first 22 selections of the draft, I wonder if anyone has more.
      Matthews 1, JVR 2, Marner 4, Rielly 5, Kadri 7, Nylander 8, Holland 15, Gardiner 17, Rychel 19, Gauthier 21, Kapanen 22,

      Milan Michalek was selected #6 and Lupul 7 when the dinosaurs still wandered planet earth but if Michalek stays healthy, he could be this years Parenteau and be jettisoned to a contender in Feb 2017 deadline.

      If Lupul is healthy perhaps the Coyotes or Hurricanes need a contract to help reach the cap floor plus… IF his hernia issues are behind him as he has stated, he could score 20 in 60 games and IF re-injures himself, his contract is insured.
      Can anyone say Nathan Horton ?//

      I wonder if….
      I think …
      I believe that Jarmo Kekäläinenköoökaämönga has lost his marbles and is suffering from an advanced case of “Burkienonisitis”, aka “dimentia” aka “git yer head outta your (_i_) hole before the only thing I that remains of the Columbus franchise will be David Clarkson wandering through the rubble, while he fires the team canon at the first responders muttering something about the damn French, Quebec City and his NMC.

      Kessel, the trade that keeps on giving 🙂

  • Jeremy Ian

    I have hopes for Rychel. Could be a very good piece down the road — and Harrington was not breaking in as effectively as hoped.

    Edit, third line as of today? Rychel-Matthews-Marner?

  • Gary Empey

    I watched Kerby Rychel a game against the Marlies. I thought he was a genuine pain-in-ass to play against. Made only more annoying when he scored a goal.

    • Gary Empey

      Mybe that Rychel goal was the one that impressed the Leafs’ brass enough to trade for him, #14 Gary Empey.

      Although it is more likely that Mark Hunter knows Kerby Rychel all too well from his Windsor Spitfire days…back then Hunter’s London Knights battled mightily against Windsor for dominance in the OHL Western Conference.

      Hopefully a change of scenery does Kerby some good…Leafs need a left winger with Lupul’s buyout looming.