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TLN Mailbag: H0ckeyfan talks about the blueline, free agency, and more!

Welcome to the Leafs Nation mailbag! Your good friend h0ckeyfan is here answering your questions about the Buds! Let’s GO!

It’s hard to say. The Leafs are pressed right up against the cap right now and don’t have much room to make an addition. Over the summer, there weren’t very many good free agent defencemen on the market, as you can see with guys like Dmitry Kulikov signing multi-year deals.

I would love to see the Leafs pull the trigger and acquire a top, right-handed defenceman like Drew Doughty because it would really stabilize their blueline, but the price to do so would be massive. The cost to acquire good defensive talent is high, as we saw when the Oilers had to give up Taylor Hall to acquire Adam Larsson.

The Penguins won the Stanley Cup last season with a ragtag group of good-not-great defencemen, so there’s no reason to believe the Leafs can’t be successful with what they have.

I would bet JVR is gone. He turns 29 years old in May and is going to command a massive contract. The Capitals signed a similar player in T.J. Oshie to an eight-year deal last summer that isn’t going to look good in a few years. The Leafs need to be careful about their cap picture because in a few years Matthews, Nylander, and Marner are going to be expensive.

Bozak I also can’t really see sticking around simply because some other team will give him $4 million to be their second line centre. He’s been a good player for the Leafs, but is turning 32 years old this spring.

The one I could see sticking around, oddly enough, is Komarov. He doesn’t produce offence at a high level but plays that gritty, old school game the front office seems to like. It wouldn’t cost as much to keep him around, either.

Not at all. Development isn’t linear and some players progress at different paces than others.

Like I mentioned earlier, the Leafs are going to be expensive pretty soon. Matthews and Nylander will cost them similar to what McDavid and Draisaitl are paid in Edmonton, so around $21 million annually. Then there’s also Mitch Marner and Jake Gardiner who will also need new deals.

With an expensive core, you need to constantly be shuffling in new, cheap talent. Bracco, if all goes well, can ideally fill the role of somebody like JVR when they leave the team to sign a mega deal in free agency. The Leafs seem to be into rolling with four lines that can score, and as a result, there will always be room for players who are good enough to contribute.

The best defence is a good offence. Welcome to the world of tomorrow.

You’re aiming way too low. Think two hands.

I have no idea but I’m pretty sure he has more goals than everyone on the Oilers combined. Don’t fact check this.

No, this is more of a Tweet bag.

The Buds are the only team worth cheering for.

  • CMpuck

    I’m kinda of excited to see another team over pay for JVR on an 8 year deal. Love JVR but that’s 4 years too many.

    The question is how does Buffalo find room to over pay him?