Will the Leafs buy out Komisarek?

Komisarek, the whipping post of seasons past, has played only four games and simply can’t bust his way into the lineup. Liles was scratched Monday against the Panthers to make room for Carl Gunnarson, back from hip problems. The former Colorado defenceman played fairly well early in the season, but his prowess in the offensive zone generally isn’t matched in the defensive zone, something that may not fit easily with defensive-minded head coach Randy Carlyle.

Komisarek has one more year left at $4.5 million. He may be bought out this summer. Liles has three more years left at $3.875 million, not an onerous salary but one not moved easily, either.

Both could return to active duty at some point, even soon, so this is not necessarily the conclusion to their careers as valued Leafs.

But while there should be no joy simply because Komisarek and Liles are having to deal with the embarrassment of not being used, Leaf fans may wish to look at this as a positive in this way; no longer do contracts decide who plays in Toronto.

And don’t think this doesn’t matter.

If you want to know why the Leafs, winners of six of their past seven, look a little hungrier this season, part of it may be because players are being pushed at every position, and few have the luxury of feeling safe.


53 Responses to Will the Leafs buy out Komisarek?

  1. leafmeister says:

    Could they not have given him to the Isles with a 7th rounder or something rather than them paying Tim Thomas to do nothing? He may not be a great D-man, but he is a good locker room guy, adds team toughness and would have gotten NYI to the cap floor. Also he is a local guy. NYI could have actually probably used him. He is a definite upgrade over Matt Carkner, and would add a similar dimension.

    • leafs_wallace93 says:

      I don’t think they’re paying Thomas, he just counts against the cap which qualifies them for assistance.

      • Steven_Leafs0 says:

        Remember that the Islanders didn’t need Thomas to get to the cap floor. They have him so that they can trade a contract without dropping below the floor.

        Add to the fact that Thomas doesn’t count as cash so you get 5M in cap while saving 5M in cash.

  2. doorman says:

    Lol the isles aren’t paying Thomas he only counts against the cap but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them go after him. They will need someone to at after they trade lubo and streit

  3. 93killer93 says:

    My reply was to leafmeister. Ya I was referring to Tavares. I don’t think they can afford to trade him. I really think he either finishes his career with the Isles or walks as soon as he becomes a UFA.

  4. leafs_wallace93 says:

    I’m a bit curious to see how Komisarek would fair for a few games under Caryle given that Komisarek has to be starved to make an impact. Wouldn’t mind seeing him going after a Lucic in an effort to save his career. Montreal’s Komi was a beast in his day.

    • mojo19 says:

      Montreal’s Komi was just okay. He was really overrated in Montreal. His play never matched his hype. I think what you see is what you get with this guy, there’s no salvaging anything here.

      Komisarek and Liles would be great buyouts. Clear another $8.3 million off the cap this summer. We really don’t need these guys. Burkie’s Americans can all slowly go. Brown and Steckel as well, I really don’t see much use in having them. Well Brownie, 1 more year at $700K is a fine 13th forward, but we won’t need to re-sign him after next season.

  5. mojo19 says:

    This article is funny. I’m sure Komisarek will be bought out. That’s not the question. The question is whether or not Liles is bought out.

  6. mojo19 says:

    We have decent depth on the blueline. Here’s our top d-men in order according to me, maybe your order varies from mine:

    Dion Phaneuf
    Jake Gardiner
    Carl Gunnarsson
    Cody Franson
    J-M Liles
    Mark Fraser
    Mike Kostka
    Korbinian Holzer
    Mike Komisarek

    We really don’t need Liles and Komi eating up 1/8th of next year’s cap space.

    • toronto77 says:

      lol, and that’s just the players on the team, not to mention RIelly who probably WILL be on the team next season, and Finn, Percy and Blacker are not to far away.

      Next Season:


      huge fan of Franson, but he is a top 4 d-man and I think Gunnar and Phaneuf out perform him and Rielly and Gardiner probably will as well, which leaves no room for him in the top 4, he’s too good for the 5th and 6th spots, so might as well trade him.

      Kostka is good but Gardiner and Rielly will both be way better then him. But he is one of our best d-man right now and i fear that the leafs will trade Gardiner before him only b/c Rielly will probably be a lot better then Gardiner and is a similar player which makes him expendable. Plus Gardiner’s trade value is much higher than Kostka’s and will bring much more in return.

      Further down the road:


      *that’s actually not that bad, as much as I hate Phaneuf, having an offensive beast like Rielly will take a shit load of pressure off of Phaneuf and allow him to play a real shut down role.

      • mojo19 says:

        You make a good point. And we have plugs like Ranger and Mottau who both have NHL experience, so its possible one of them slides in as an 8th d-man with a hot camp (assuming we retain one or both, and Ranger has some kind of ambition again.)
        As for young Morgan…
        Rielly was pretty bad at the World Juniors, so I’m pretty much basing all of this on what I saw from him there, but… I don’t think he’s going to make it next season.

        I hear he looks outstanding in Junior, maybe it was just a bad tourney for him? Either way, he looked a couple years away to me. Again, small sample size but that was my impression.

        • LN91 says:

          He did not light up the score sheet, but many praised him during the World Juniors because he was able to jump in the rush and was able to play better on the big ice then Reinhart or Dougie Hamilton.

          • doorman says:

            He is an amazing skater and passer both of NHL calibre without a doubt. I don’t think his play in the WJHC was horrible, but he wasn’t the impact player I thought he would be. That being said, I would not be sad to see a young 19 yr old dman returned to jr again to develop. I would hope they don’t look to move Franson either.

            As for Liles he can most certainly be traded perhaps at the deadline. Plus, I am not positive with only one season left, especially to a playoff team looking for a vetern that Komi isn’t tradeable either.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      Yea, That’s pretty close to the order I would put them in. I am a little concerned about Gardiner though. I hope the concussion has not scared him so much that he is going to change his style of play(not as patient with the puck) because he is worried about being hit.

  7. nordiques100 says:

    The number of bodies on D is a luxury. The Leafs hopefully will take advantage of it. An injury or two and Mike Mottau could be leading the D. There is no need to do anything with Komi til the end of the season.

    Liles I am certain will get back in at some point.

    Its not ideal obviously, having Liles, Komi and their 8 mil combined on the bench, but the message they are sending, that the players playing at the best are going to play.

    I think that benefits a player like Franson. I mean he strung together some decent play last year, then had one bad game and Wilson yanked him. Carlyle is pushing him, to make sure he stays at the top of his game, and the guy is earning his PT.

    And this allows them to ease Gardiner back into a groove. He is starting to play better now. He may be someone they add in the last half of the schedule.

    Carlyle though is preferring bigger guys on D and guys more committed to playing D. I think they are having decent chemistry back there and working ok with the forwards. If the forwards continue to help them out more then it only adds to what Carlyle is trying to do.

  8. realistic_leafs_fan says:

    I understand the wanting to move Liles and Komi(or buyout komi at end of season).
    What I don’t understand is the idea of making room for Gardiner, Reilly by moving Franson.
    As I said last year (which brought much anger.lol), Gardiner maybe traded with the arrival of Reilly and also because franson is getting a chance to show how capable he is now that Wilson is gone.
    You don’t trade Franson when he is a pending RFA and maybe our best defenceman right now.IMO If Nonis is smart, he tries to lock him in for 3-4 more years and keep it under $3mil per season. We could probably get him for 4 years at $2.5 per(around that).
    6′ 5″ defencemen who skate well for their size, are good passers(Franson is a very good passer), move the puck out of their end well, and have a quick, heavy shot from the point while playing 18-20 minutes a night are very rare.
    The best move is to get him signed first, if Gardiner and Reilly can beat him out for a spot, then you might move him.
    Honestly though, the idea of having Phaneuf, Reilly, Finn, Gardiner, Holzer and Fraser does not thrill me. We are way too small on the backend.IMO
    The ideal scenario to me would be to lock up Franson for 4 years at a reasonable price, monitor Reilly’s development over the next 1 1/2 years, If Reilly looks ready to take the next step and looks like he will be a for sure thing(as much as can be predicted), then the odd guy out is Gardiner, assuming Franson continues to prove himself.
    We then trade Gardiner for a big return and improve our forward situation.
    I like
    Phaneuf Reilly
    Franson Finn
    Holzer Fraser for example, better than that mentioned above. We are bigger, yet still mobile and we have a better top 6 thanks to the return we got for Gardiner.

  9. doorman says:

    Nonis I think will try and move komi, buying him out with a year left is useless and a wwaste of a buyout as he would count against the cap next season anyway. As for liles if he gets a decent return i think he moves him. I don’t think he is in a hurry to being our only vetern PMD. Add that to Nonis doesn’t have a huge history or trading dmen and i think Liles is here until Gardiner and Rielly are both more established. However in the right deal I think he is gone. What I do wonder as far as cap concerns go is what Ana is gonna do with a 3mil back up lol.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      The positive with Nonis is that he is not new to the situation and doesn’t have to take time to evaluate what he has. He already knows. I think Liles will be moved by the deadline if Gardiner returns to the Leafs. I know Nonis history is not to move D-men, but something has to give and he will make a move I believe.
      Anaheim won’t bring back Selanne at $4.5, Koivu at $3.8 or Lydman at $3 most likely. If they come back, it will be for less I would think. Fasth at $2.9 will eat up some, but they have some room left. If they move Hiller, they have room to re-sign Getzlaf and Perry.
      I am also interested to see how NYR handles the cap issue.

  10. nordiques100 says:

    Burke back to the Ducks as a part time scout.

  11. nordiques100 says:

    in other news, Nonis said teams have called about Connolly. With an expiring contract, could be moved at deadline.

  12. leafs_wallace93 says:

    All this Komisarek and Liles talk, what about buying out Grabovski? 5.5 for a checkline line center? I like Garbovski but I can’t see managing his cap hit along side Lupul’s is a quality investment of 11 million dollars. With Phaneuf and Kessel looking for extensions keeping Grabovski really hurts us in the UFA market hunt.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      I don’t see the Leafs buying out Liles or Grabovski. Typically buyouts are done on players that are so overpaid that there would be no trade interest and the team has no interest in them anymore either.
      I think Nonis would make a trade for a pick if he had to before buyingout Grabovski or Liles.
      Komisarek may be bought out at end of season.

    • nordiques100 says:

      I agree. While they have some cap space….that could quickly evaporate should Dion and Kessel be locked up long term. They would not be able to add to the core.

      I think the current big tickets would be Phaneuf, Kessel, Lupul and JVR. I think there is room for 2 more plus being able to surround them with quality, affordable talents.

      This is why i am one of the bigger proponents of keeping 1st rounders. You draft them, and i assume Toronto can draft well now, you develop them, and i assume Toronto does develop well now and you put them in and they could contribute big, but with smallish salaries for 3 years. Thats a big window.

      They could very well find homes for Grabo, Mac, Kulemin, Liles and Komi and dump Connolly and they could legitimately go after whomever. I think they should go after whomever irregardless and worry about the cap issues later. In the past, they’ve “settled” on keeping a guy like Grabo, not a horrible choice, but as you said, not ideal for the role he fills, so i am hopeful that kind of thinking is the thing of the past.

      • leafmeister says:

        It may be early in his Toronto career, but I think JVR is about as untouchable as they come. 4.25 for the next 6 years. He could put up a few 30 or even 40 (hopefully) goal seasons in that time.

  13. doorman says:

    I don’t think they are going to buyout Komi, he will still count against the cap next season if they do. Being that he would count and it the last year, why would you not keep him? Or as much as it pains me to say a trade like Komi &3rd for a 4th rd’er? I just don’t see it, two seasons left sure, next year only, don’t see it.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      I thought if they wait til the off-season, they could use a compliance buy-out and then it wouldn’t count against the cap? not true?

      • doorman says:

        I thought that the compliance buyouts did for the first season, but I am wrong several times a day, lol. I was sure that was the case with Gomez and Mtl. lol, now I need to check.Capgeek has Gomez against the cap this year but not again after, lol…..I am confused.

      • doorman says:

        Nope, looks like I am wrong, nevermind lol, though i would use them on longer term deals rather then one year left players.

        • realistic_leafs_fan says:

          I think you get one buyout this off-season and one next. I would buyout komi this summer and use that $4.5 to help re-up Kadri, Gunnar, Franson. Next off-season, if needed, I would use it on Grabo or Liles. I do believe Liles will be dealt though…Grabo, I’m not sure on what they will do with him yet.

  14. lafleur10 says:

    they can be used over the current lenght of the cba but your only allowed 2 buyots i think i read it somewhere doorman.

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