We’ve spent so much time discussing who will be coming to the Leafs, let’s look at some predictions on where some of the Leafs free agents could be heading…
JVR: Arizona Coyotes. They have the cap space and JVR is arguably the next best forward after Tavares in this UFA pool. I have a feeling the Coyotes will want to at least _try_ to compete next year.
Bozak: Montreal Canadiens. They are desperate for centers and want to actually try to win for whatever reason. Maybe they’ll put him on the wing though.
Komarov: Anaheim Ducks. They’ll spend the little money they have on Leo and will fail to re-sign Kase or something. Also Dave Nonis.
Polak: The Flames just got rid of a right-handed defenseman, so there?
JVR: I feel like he’ll probably end up in New Jersey. They have the cap space to sign them, they’re an up and coming team that might be looking to compete, they’ve already reportedly shown interest in him, and New Jersey is his hometown, so there are a lot of signs that point there.
Bozak: Vancouver might be his spot. They need a new center with Henrik Sedin gone, and Benning is porbably dumb enough to go after Bozak thinking he can still be a first line center.
Komarov: I’ve heard the Rangers are interested in him, and it makes sense. He’s the kind of guy that you bring into a rebuilding team as a veteran to help out the younger kids, and New York always seems to want to try and bring in some free agent.
Polak: The Oilers, because they still seem hellbent on fixing their right side, and Chiarelli is an idiot, so he’d probably think he’s a good defenseman
JVR: VEGAS, BABY. They’ve got a whole lot of money to spend, and while the Leafs should probably just look at replacing JVR internally rather than paying him big, Vegas can afford to do it. JVR is an upgrade from Perron, who’s a UFA this summer, and would go towards replacing offense from James Neal if he and Vegas part ways. And any reservations UFAs may have had about whether Vegas could be competitive early on in their existence… Poof. Gone. Vanished.
Bozak: I’m gonna pull something out of thin air and say… Dallas. They have some big guns, and they should be close to being a legitimate threat, but a lack of consistent secondary scoring has stung them in recent years. Bozak isn’t a top line centre anymore, but he’s a good third line guy and he’d give them some depth that they’ve lacked.
Komarov: Yeah, NYR. Agree with Scott. I don’t have anything beyond that.
Polak: Come on, Babcock’s gonna try to get him re-signed. We all know it but we don’t want to admit it. However, I can kinda see San Jose welcoming him back.
Tyler Bozak seems destined to walk the path of Kyle Wellwood and end up in Vancouver. Benning’s got too much cap space and not enough sense. At the same time Bozak will get to play a lot of really bad Pacific teams on a regular basis and this move won’t look as bad as it is.
Komarov has been rumoured to the Rangers so that seems like what will happen. Komarov is an expert at being the seasoned veteran on teams undergoing a rebuild and he can play to his strength. If I hadn’t heard that rumour I probably would have said Carolina since Finns have been working well for them [waits for large number of “actually…” replies on where Komarov was born].
I guess JVR goes to Vegas. I could be wrong. I’ve got absolutely no read on what he’s going to do.
Roman Polak is definitely going to be a Hab. It’s going to be glorious.