Marc Spector News –

Boring Business

Maple Leaves

Hall Call

Boring Business

Have to admit it: though many of my colleagues work tirelessly in trying to unearth new details of the latest ownership gyrations in Tampa, I could … not … care … less.

The Canadian hockey media spends an inordinate amount of time on franchises like Nashville, Phoenix and Tampa Bay — teams that the average Canadian has little or no interest in. And I am guilty of it too.

I know I should care more about the latest Oren Koules-Len Barrie cash shortfall in Tampa, but I just don’t.

The more important question is, do you?

Maple Leaves

So Jamal Mayers and Garnet Exelby want out of Toronto. In other news, the NHL would like to get rid of head shots and bad southern markets.

Mayers has one goal, five points, and through 42 games averages 8:47 of ice time per game. All this for the low, low price of $1.4 million.

Exelby, another brilliant Leafs acquisition, makes $1.725 this season. A bargain for three assists, no goals, and a part-time seat in the press box at the ACC.

The problem with Mayers and Exelby taking their trade requests public is if either of these players doesn’t move by the March 3 deadline we’ll know that Burke couldn’t even get a sixth-round draft pick for them.

Have fun in the UFA market after that one, boys.

Hall Call

Chris Pronger wouldn’t stay in Edmonton. Sheldon Souray wants out of Edmonton. And the list of free agents who have said “No” to Edmonton would fill this column.

How long until we see the press release from Taylor Hall’s agent warning the Oilers not to bother choosing him?

30 Responses to Marc Spector News –

  1. leafy says:

    Why trade Exelby? He's a "Burke type of player"….whatever that means.  Arrrgghh!

    Exelby for Kubina. What a great trade that was.

  2. leafy says:

    Yeah I know, Kubina had a big salary. But come on.

  3. glotz_99 says:

    hey does anyone else think mark spector is a tool? I don't get how this guy is a sports writer, when he knows so little about hockey or sports in general.

    For example everyone knows that you don't have to pay a player's entire years salary when he is only going to be on your team for the last month of the regular season and the playoffs.  Vesa Toskala makes 4 million per season but if he were to be traded before the deadline, he would only be owed less than 1 million for the remainder of the season.

    Another article of his I read a couple weeks ago stated Souray was worth more on the trade market then Thomas Kaberle, you gotta be kidding me this guy is a total hack.  

  4. reinjosh says:

    it was a stupid trade
    but it was more Exelby plus Komisarek for Kubina
    The money we saved on Kubina was used to sign Komisarek.
    And I really havent seen Komi play enough to judge that
    it was a salary dump and depending what Atlanta gets for him if they trade him it might have been a stupid one

  5. leafy says:

    Don't get me wrong, I don't have a problem with Beauchemin and we haven't seen Komisarek play a lot, but I really liked Kubina. Maybe the Leafs would have been better off keeping Kubina and signing only one of Beau or Komi.

  6. cam7777 says:

    not as bad as Lyle whathisname on at spector's hockey.  that guys has fallen off his rocker lately.  all he does is put down everything.  his answer to everything is "it can't happen because of salary".  he's also a staunch Leaf Hater.

  7. reinjosh says:

    im completely with you on that

  8. reinjosh says:

    richardson i believe is his last name
    the guy is a tool
    every trade is explained away by "salary"
    like, i really don't think he understands the way the cap is actually calculated

  9. cam7777 says:

    So it sounds like, according to Dreger, there is interest in a lot of Leaf players, even the lesser guys like Stempniak and so on, but their price tags make them up hard sells.  However, I think this is where Burke's salary dump trades come into place.  Something like:

    To NJD: Lee Stempniak, Jonas Frogren
    To TOR: Jay Pandolfo, 2nd in 2010


    To CHI: Matt Stajan
    To TOR: Brent Sopel, 2nd in 2010, 3rd in 2011 (TOR)

    Where Sopel and Pandolfo are being dumped in the minors at the end of the season.  In the first scenario, we get a 2nd instead of a 3rd for Stempniak, and in Stajan' case, we get an extra pick thrown back at us (our own 3rd in 2011), for taking back Sopel in the deal.

    What I'm most curious about though is this rumored multi-player deal that Joe Neuwyndyk is apparently pursuing quite heavily.  The buzz on the internet is that Morrow is proving an unnecessary commodity with the quick development of Neal, Benn and Eriksson (to say nothing of Brunnstrom).  However, the only thing i can think of there would be a Hagman/Morrow swap, where they throw in a mid round pick because of the salary change, and we get a more Burke-ian player.  That's hardly a multi-player deal though.

    I wouldn't be surprized to see Ponikarovsky and Stajan traded to teams that can't afford to resign them (Chicago, Pittsburgh, San Jose, etc…), and then Burke approaching those teams at the draft offering to take salary he can dump in the minors in exchange for their rights back.  For example, maybe with the Stajan trade mentioned above, you tell Chicago that you'll do Stajan for a 2nd, and in the summer we'll take Sopel if you throw in another pick, or the rights to Stajan back, or both.

    Or you just work out a deal with Poni and Stajan and tell them you want them back, but you need to trade them for picks.  Show them the deals that would be waiting for them on July 1st, and tell them to go have fun in the playoffs.  Hopefully they'd come back hungry for a little more success in Toronto.

    Either way, point is, I wouldn't mind having these guys back on the roster, so long as we are able to trade them for a return before hand.  This season is lost, but we add a couple more pieces, and keep these two, and we could be in a lot better shape next year.

  10. cam7777 says:

    New Plan:

    Deadline Trades:

    To Chicago: Matt Stajan, Jamal Mayers
    To Toronto: 2nd in 2010 (CHI), 3rd in 2011 (TOR)
    (this trade is done with the promise that the Leafs will help them with a Sopel salary dump in the summer)

    To New Jersey: Lee Stempniak, Jonas Frogren
    To Toronto: Jay Pandolfo, 2nd in 2010 (NJD)

    To Pittsburgh: Alex Ponikarovsky, Garnet Exelby
    To Toronto: Luca Caputi, 2nd in 2010 (PIT)

    -resign Nikolai Kulemin, 4 years, 9 million
    -resign Chris Hanson, 2 years, 1.95 million
    -resign Jonas Gustavsson, 3 years, 5.475 million

    Leading up to the Draft:

    To Los Angeles: Tomas Kaberle, Mikhail Grabovski
    To Toronto: Brayden Schenn, 1st in 2011

    To Chicago: Jason Blake, John Mitchell, 2nd in 2010 (CHI), rights to Jimmy Hayes
    To Toronto: Brian Campbell, Dustin Byfuglien, Brent Sopel, 1st in 2010
    (In order to dump almost 50 million in salary, and 8.5 million in annual capspace – and more if they waive blake or buy him out – the Hawks really have to lose every part of this trade, and they do.  Obviously this isn't a fair trade, but it allows them to keep almost their entire team together outside of Campbell/Byfuglien).

    So the Leafs draft twice in the 2nd round, and once, late in the 1st round.

    -waive Jeff Finger; re-assign to the Marlies (AHL)
    -waive Jay Pandolfo; re-assign to the Marlies (AHL)

    Free Agency / Summer:

    -sign Matt Stajan, 4 years, 11.3 million
    -sign Alex Ponikarovsky, 3 years, 9.75 million
    -sign Taylor Pyatt, 2 years, 1.7 million
    -sign J.S. Giguere, 2 years, 4.5 million
    (after his presumed buyout)

    I think from here, you just head into summer hoping that you can use a package of Hagman/White to draw in a top player for Kessel to play with.  Perhaps Bobby Ryan?  The Ducks have tried to trade for both of these guys, so if Ryan is still a holdout by then, I could see this going down.

    To Anaheim: Niklas Hagman, Ian White, 3rd in 2010
    To Toronto: Bobby Ryan

    The lineup:

    Nikolai Kulemin – Phil Kessel – Bobby Ryan
    Alex Ponikarovsky – Matt Stajan – Dustin Byfuglien
    Viktor Stalberg – Tyler Bozak – Christian Hanson
    Taylor Pyatt – Wayne Primeau – Colton Orr

    Brian Campbell – Francois Beauchemin
    Carl Gunnarsson – Luke Schenn
    Mike Komisarek – Brent Sopel

    Jonas Gustavsson – J.S. Giguere

    CAP HIT – 56.601

    Then we give Kadri and Schenn a year extra to develop.  We can't expect much better results next year with this roster, but presumably Sopel, Hanson, Pyatt and Byfuglien will be better role players than Mayers, Wallin, Exelby, and Mitchell.  Also, Kessel with two pretty solid linemates really helps I think.  The next season, you move in Schenn and Kadri, and trade whoever they oust for another solid D-man (Phaneuf?).

  11. leafmeister says:

    Giguere is way to inconsistent for that kind of money. The Leafs can't bank another season on a hot and cold goalie. Gustovsson has not been good enough to bank half the games on, they need a proven guy. Turco is the best option.

    Also that is a very expensive defensive core. Campbell 7.1, Komi 4.5, Beauchemin, 3.8, Sopel 2.8, and then Schenn would probably be in the 3.5-4 range after next season. On top of which we would eventually have to sign Kadri/B.Schenn to long term deals and Ryan would get 4+.

    I think Kessel is probably better suited for the wing, goal scorers like him usually are.

    Bobby Ryan may be available, but two things would have to happen: Niedermayer retires, leaving a hole on Anaheims blueline, and the contract talks with Ryan go south. It would take Kaberle to get the deal done.

    I doubt LA is still in the market for Kaberle, Doughty is younger, cheaper, better and does the same role. If their is a way to get Brayden Schenn I am all for it, but my guess is that as of now, the Leafs dont have anything to offer.

  12. Kramer says:

    It's no fair. Miss Kentucky should have won the Miss America pageant. She was the hottest by far. A red dress too.

    But she lost her nerve in the speech part. I say it all the time, poise counts!

    Miss Virginia won but her yellow dress looked like miss Havisham in Great Expectations.

  13. bbruins37 says:

    i just want to take back all of my bashing raycroft comments. solid goalie.

  14. cam7777 says:

    Well, they all fit under the cap, so the cost of them is not all that concerning.  You can never have too many high end defensemen on your team. Kaberle is a player that can break down the trap with his threading of the needle passes – this is highly valuable in the playoffs.  Doughty is very good, but first of all, he does not play the same role as Kaberle, and secondly, he is 20 years old.  Regardless, we can just switch the deals around if it makes you happy.  Kaberle + Grabovski for Bobby Ryan +, and Hagman + White for B.Schenn.  The assets are there, and that's what matters.

    Putting Kessel in the center is a temporary solution for next year.  I think he'd be fine there with a quality winger like Ryan.  The point is that he needs someone else on that line with him, because he just can't do much with everyone all over him all the time.  Someone has to provide a secondary threat on the top line.  Ideally, once Schenn and Kadri hit the lineup in 2012, the roster would look like this:

    Nikolai Kulemin – Nazem Kadri – Phil Kessel
    Alex Ponikarovsky – Brayden Schenn – Bobby Ryan
    Viktor Stalberg – Matt Stajan – Dustin Byfuglien
    Wayne Primeau – Chris Hanson – Colton Orr

    Kessel goes back to the wing, and we have a much more complete looking offense.  That ousts Bozak, or Stajan potentially.  At that point, I would package whoever is on the outs with Beauchemin and try to land another top tier defender, or a high end draft pick.

    As far as talking to Ryan goes, all that has to happen is for him to make it July 1st without a contract.  At that point, Burke is free to negotiate with him.  At that poing, Murry can either except a package for him, or wait for someone to offer sheet him.  If Burke really needed to, he could probably trade Hagman or White for our 1st in 2011 back from Boston, and make the threat that way. 

  15. leafy says:

    13 saves in two periods. 

    This guy hasn't had a good season since 2003-04 going back 4 teams.

    He's an ok backup goalie. Nothing more.

  16. leafmeister says:

    That roster would be sick, but as of now, I don't see the Leafs getting Schenn. He will be available in a few years, when LA goes the way of Chicago/Pittsburgh/Tampa, but as of now, I think Lombardi will hold on to him. Seriously, how good is he gonna look centering Dustin Brown?

    Ryan is a definite possibility. If Niedermayer retires, that would leave a major hole on the Anaheim blue line. Kaberle would represent a cap friendly, high end puck mover to replace Niedermayer. If Burke called and offered say, Hagman and Kaberle for Ryan, unless a bidding war were to start, I am not sure Murray would turn it down. If Murray really was not interested, than I would offer to take Giguere of off their hands.

    Kaberle, Hagman
    Ryan, Giguere, 2011 2nd

  17. cam7777 says:

    Yea, but Lomardi admitted himself, he is finally in "addition-mode".  He could add Kovalchuk in the summer, and still trade for Kaberle, and still have Hickey, Teubert and Moller coming down the pipe.  Look at how sick this LA roster would be if they made my trade:

    L1: Ryan Smyth, Anze Kopitar, Justin Williams
    L2: Ilya Kovalchuk, Mikhail Grabovski, Dustin Brown
    L3: Oscar Moller, Jarret Stoll, Wayne Simmonds

    D1: Drew Doughty, Tomas Kaberle
    D2: Jack Johnson, Rob Scuderi
    D3: Matt Greene, Peter Harrold

    GT: Jonathan Quick, Jonathan Bernier

    Point and case, they have KOVALCHUK on the SECOND LINE!! That top six is maintainable for a few years, because Smyth is only going to be cheaper after a resign next season, and as of now, Moller and Simmonds don't look like they'll break the bank on resigns.

    As of now, it sounds like Giguere is headed to Toronto at long last.  We are about to FINALLY see what Burke has been up to.

  18. leafmeister says:

    Phaneuf is a Leaf.

  19. cam7777 says:


    now hopefully he will put the crack pipe down and get to work in TO.

  20. cam7777 says:

    I knew he was interested in Phaneuf.  My suggestion was a multi-team trade involving Beauchemin, Hagman and Stajan.  Sounds like it could be Kaberle though.  Still, this is exciting.

  21. blaze says:

    Atta boy Burkie. A 24 year old all-star defenseman for spare parts!

  22. blaze says:

    Giguere later today for Toskala?

  23. leafmeister says:

    And Keith Aulie, he is a top defensive prospect. He made Canada's WJC team. This is huge. Sutter has to share whatever he is smoking. It must be powerful shit.

  24. cam7777 says:

    It shows you how highly regarded White is though.  That is why I have always said that White could only be moved for something big in return. 

  25. 93killer93 says:



    1st rounder


  26. cam7777 says:

    I wouldn't mind seeing Stajan return here in summer.  Calgary will be hard pressed to get everyone resigned.  I think they almost have to find a way to re-up Jokinen, just to try and get some kind of value out of him.  Letting someone go after one season, who you gave up a 1st rounder for, is probably not good business.  So they could have a hard time getting both Stajan and Bourque resigned.

    I only want Stajan back if Calgary makes the playoffs though.  He has to get to know what the post-season is all about in order to make it worthwhile.  I would have preferred to deal Grabovski, but maybe that trade is still coming.  Apparently a Blake/Finger for Giguere deal is next.

  27. cam7777 says:

    Probably just a 2nd rounder though.

  28. mojo19 says:

    Couldn't agree more boys.

    I have to imagine we could have landed more for Kubina. Or better yet, kept him and not signed Komisarek.

    Not to mention we included Stapes in that deal, and Timmy was our best Marlie from last year. Not that he had the right stuff to be an effective NHL'er, just hurts the marlies.

  29. mojo19 says:

    what Lyle Richardson does, is say "it won't happen" to everything. And since most rumours don't come true, he gets to say "I was right" most of the time. It doesn't take much talent to do what he does.

    If you scroll way back to October, you can see my comment on one of his rumour pages (under the name mojo19) calling him out as a Leaf hater. He then made comments under the name "spector-rulez!" getting back at me before revealing that it was actually him. And then he sent me a couple e-mails to discuss why he wasn't a leaf hater.

    Bottom line is, that guy is a loser.
    Mark Spector is a tool too. He's so pro-western conference its not even funny. And now doesn't he look stupid after Burke said that Darryl Sutter insisted on Mayers being involved in the big trade.

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