So what's next for JFJ

Last year, I was not upset at any Leafs moves (except maybe not buying out Belfour). Frankly, it was a transition year, and I knew it would be painful. JFJ went out there and took some risks to try to ice a competitive team. For the most part he succeeded.

What he did best though, was not tie up a lot of money in long contracts. The idea was *supposed* to be that they would have the money to start rebuilding this year; with a new plan under a new CBA.

Yesterday, he decided to take some of that money and get aggressive. He tried to address the largest problem the Leafs have; defense of course. Yesterday was *supposed* to be the beginning of a team that was headed in the right direction. Instead, I look at the team now and I see nothing but 4 years of futility after they hamstrung themselves against the cap.

17 million in 4 defenseman and NOT ONE of them is considered a premiere defenseman in this league by people outside of Toronto. McCabe may be close… maybe. These were exactly the kind of moves I did not want to see. So where do we go from here? The Leafs cap situation looks something like the following:

Buyouts – 2 million (belfour .75, Domi 1.25)

3 Goalies* – 2.464 million

5 Defense – 17.712 million

11 Forwards** – 16.3636 million

* assumes Raycroft plays for the qualifying amount.

** assumes Antropov, Wellwood, Stajan at 1 million each

Total Committed: 38.550 million

Somwhere, they need to ice 2 more D (3 if Kronvall is not one of the kids) and 2 more forwards(wingers). To stay 2 million under the cap, which should be the maximum they want to spend, they have 3.450 million.

I only see a few scenarios. Here is one plan that might work.

1) White and Harrison are the number 6-7 D-men at 500K each.

2) Trade Colaiacovo (who I don’t think they want anyway) to Florida for Roberts… BUT, Florida must take Belak from them as a salary dump. Now they have 2 more forwards to sign and they have .875 million (3.45 +.675 – .5 – .5 -2.25)

3) Trade Tellqvist to somone for a pick.

4) Lindros .750, and a Marlie (Suglabov?) .500K…

Payroll is approx. 41.786

Steen – Sundin – Roberts

O’Neill – Lindros – Tucker

Antropovl – Wellwood – Ponikarovsky

Kilger – Stajan – Pohl

Extra – Suglabov/Earl/whoever

McCabe – Kaberle

Kubina – Harrison

Kronvall – Gill

Extra White/Bell/Wozniewski/whoever

Raycroft / Aubin

Regardless of whether any of this actually happens, I think a couple things are probably in the Leaf’s future this summer:

1) Lindros will be re-signed. Simply, who has more upside, and is available, at that price?

2) They will dump 2 or more of Antropov, Colaiacovo, Belak, and Tellqvist. Hopefully Belak is in there somewhere in the dumpees! They can’t afford to pay these guys and they are all expendable and 3 of them are probably tradeable for a minimal return.

3) Nothing more of significance is going to happen this summer.

We can also conclude that Gary Roberts return is a serious question and by no means a given at all, unless Florida takes back some salary. Instead of Roberts, they may opt to see if they can get Guerin or Allison real cheap? Other names to look for include Grier, Bulis, Perreault, Young, Dvorak … Any of them might be available within the budget.

14 Responses to So what's next for JFJ

  1. FlyersfanKyle says:

    i dont wanna bash u cuz obviously u have acctually put alot of thought and effort into this (especially math) but i just wanna point out one problem with their roster

    they have pretty much the same forwards didnt the leafs have alot of trouble scoring at 5on5 Kubina will help that but they need some scoring forwads. im gonna be a jerk and not make a prediction, ill leave that upto someone else but all im saying is i remember the leafs had trouble getting it going 5on5.

    you can bash all you want but it dosnt make it any less true

  2. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    JFJ has left no more cash for a decent offence, so one can expect to see Antropov and Poni on the top line again next year. Anson Carter may be another option

  3. 92-93 says:

    but ok, what’s done is done.

    lets look at the leafs now:












    1) Tellqvist is traded for a mid-round draft pick

    2) Roberts is acquired via trade for a mid-round pick

    3) UFA signing: Anson Carter [no more than 2.75 million and no more than 2 years]

    4) Lindros, Wilm, Allison, Richardson, Khavanov are not resigned

    6) Coliacovo’s injury status remains up in the air

    7) Pilar and White make the team while Bell, Kronvall, Wozniewski, and Harrison play for the Marlies

    The cost of 21-man roster: $43.8 million [200K under the $44 million cap – note how utterly stupid these UFA signings are now compared to my previous estimations of signing the likes of McKee (4 million), Arnott (4.25 million), etc.?]

    Mats Sundin $6.3 million

    Kyle Wellwood $627,000

    Matt Stajan $805,600 million

    Gary Roberts $2.25 million

    Chad Kilger $1.2 million

    Alexander Steen $900,600

    Alex Ponikarovsky $712,000

    Darcy Tucker $1.596 million

    Jeff O’Neill $1.5 million

    John Pohl $450,000 million

    ANSON CARTER $2.75 million

    Nik Antropov $1.007 million

    Wade Belak $670,000

    Tie Domi BUYOUT $1.25 million

    [estimated Carter]

    Bryan McCabe $5.75 million

    Tomas Kaberle $4.25 million

    Pavel Kubina $5 million

    Ian White $650,000

    Karl Pilar $600,000

    Staffan Kronwall $612,000

    Hal Gill $2.1 million

    [estimated Pilar, White (does anyone know what his two-way salary amount is?), is Kronvall on a two-way contract?]

    Andrew Raycroft $1.5 million

    Jean-Sebastien Aubin $525,000

    Ed Belfour BUYOUT $770K

    [estimated Raycroft]

  4. 92-93 says:

    the other, MORE PREFERABLE option is to do nothing else … no Carter, Roberts … nothing. just keep about 5 million beneath the cap and make a solid trade or trades during the regular season for a younger, skilled, speedy, offensive winger.

  5. 92-93 says:

    i pretty much agree with most of what you said. people criticized JFJ (unfarily in my opinion) that he didnt do anything in the last free agency. of course they didnt take into account the fact that he was trimming a 60 million dollar payroll down to about 35-39 million dollars. thus, he had to make little stop-gap signings like Allison, Lindros, etc.

    he made mistakes too – Domi and Belfour and Berg and Belak … but for the most part, he set himself up good for this offseason.

    up until the draft, JFJ made all the right moves, all the right re-signings (Kilger, Aubin, Telly, Kaberle, McCabe). the no-trade clause on McCabe’s contract was extreme but the market on D-guys is quite hot right now.

    the Rask-Raycroft trade is inconclusive. who knows how this will work out …

    but that is the point: JFJ didnt have to really gamble on a goalie. he could have signed Legace for almost as cheap as Raycroft, still have Pogge and Rask develop, etc. but now the goaltending is up in the air.

    the defensemen signings COULD work out … but that is up in the air too. could of had more solid names like McKee and Mitchell … or Corvo or even Markov .. guys YOU KNOW will be soild. now we have to take our chances on an over-paid Kubina (always a minus player on a very good TB team), and Gill (enough said). again, things COULD work out … maybe White and Gill make a great pairing (replacing Richardson-White pairing), maybe Kubina and Coliacovo are a good tandem. maybe Raycroft returns to forum.

    or maybe not.

    and that is what i dont get about JFJ. if he is such a solid hockey guy (and he is at the minor league decision making) … then why make these kinds of ‘here-goes-nothing’ signings?

    the only two things i disagree with this article are the opinions on McCabe and Kaberle, who i DO believe are considered to be premium defencemen elsewhere in the league … not Pronger-types, but definitely in the top 10 or 20 (and consider how many total defencemen play in the NHL).

    and trading Coliacovo for Roberts? no. i dont care if Belak is bundled up there. i’d keep Coliacovo for now. he still hasnt got that shot yet due to injuries and i really liked what i saw when he did play last year.

    it looks like Telly will be traded. Belak and Antropov should be traded at some point to but, again, i think Antropov should be included in a larger deal for a solid RW.

    Perrault is an intriguing option. it would force them to NOT sign Lindros or ALlison (hopefully) and keep their centres in tact: Sundin-Wellwood-Perrault-Stajan. but i think the leafs need wingers right now. Suglobov is someone i see taking on more significance if he can get his game up to an NHL level. he has the speed and skill the leafs need. now he just needs the consistency.

  6. lukeleim says:

    Im still so upset that they signed Gill. ugghh

  7. 92-93 says:

    Just remember, Telqvist and Tucker have been offered, and one more player from the Leafs will be sent, could it be Kubina? or maybe even Kaberle if he agrees to leave. T and T are just two-thirds of the Leafs offer. Actually, Edmonton asked for Tucker.”

    the above is from Kevin Gibson at i know someone proposed the idiotic possibility of the leafs trading just Tucker and Telly for Pronger (lol). but if Kubina is added into that deal, it becomes a little more interesting. Kubina, Tucker and Tellqvist.

    personally, i would love to see this deal go down, but it aint going to happen. the leafs shed 7 million, add a little over 6 million (Pronger). maybe if JFJ threw in Antropov as well. but then the pressure is on him to acquire a guy like Carter for the right side.

    anyways, all baseless speculation at this point. personally, i think nothing is on the burner now and the leafs are stuck with Kubina and Gill.

  8. 92-93 says:

    oh, and does anyone really think JFJ is that smart? that he would be that much of an equal to Lowe when it comes to making this deal?

    i dont.

  9. 92-93 says:

    “its pretty simple math.

    somethings have got to move out. some are coming back in. on top of that we are going to leave a little bit of room for injury or acquistion later in the season.”

    a typically vague, meaningless sentence uttered by Ferguson.

    what could it mean? does it have to do with the Pronger-Kubina speculation? probably not. i see him alluding to bringing back one of Lindros or Allison and Roberts (coming back in) and trading Tellqvist (moving out). but the key is his comment about leaving a bit of room for acquisition later on. if you do the math, if Fergie brings back Lindros for a million and Roberts for 2.5 and makes no more moves at that point, the team will have

    The cost of 21-man roster: $42 million or 2 milloin under the $44 million cap. that’s still not a lot of room. if he makes the Pronger-for-Tucker/Tellqvist/Kubina trade, that amount comes down to 41 million (and 41.5 assuming Suglobov replaces tucker on the right side).

    but like i said, in any case this Pronger trade aint happening and the leafs are stuck with what they got. i think they’ll be competitive but will miss the playoffs again this year. maybe a solid trade happens, maybe Ferguson gets fired, maybe Maurice makes a HUGE difference (and this is my big hope).

    maybe, maybe, maybe.

  10. mapleleafs4cup says:

    id like to see the leafs sign roenick for cheap imagine:


    that would be the most hated line in sports history….and samonsov on the wing with sundin cant happen anyy more cause of the stupid signings with gill and kubina, kubina is pretty good but he is a little overpaid anyways carter would be an really good fit if he can find the chemistry….ughhhh i still wish they would of picked up modin

  11. FlyersfanKyle says:

    once they traded raask modin was no longer available to them

  12. Aetherial says:

    No offense taken for sure.

    I wholeheartedely agree with your take. My real point was to show that now they are in a situation where they are going to end up with pretty much the same forward lines…

    because they spent way too freaking much on Hal Gill. I would rather have seen them pick up McKee for 4 million and re-sign Richardson (who is a cheaper Hal Gill IMO) for 500K… and save themselves like 2.6 less than they spent now for only *slightly* less on D; some people would argue that McKee is > Kubina and that may well be valid also.

    I think the Leafs are screwed frankly. It reminds me too much of what Philly did with Rathje and Hatcher… only it is MORE money! Although at least Kubina has the potential to do well again.

  13. Aetherial says:

    Very similar to what I said, but I don’t want them that close to the cap. I also don’t take on Gary Roberts (given the cap situation they are in now) unless Florida takes back salary (Tellqvist, Aubin, or Belak)

  14. Aetherial says:

    I would rather see them not trade Colaiacovo also.

    Here is the problem though… 1) Is he even playing? 2) how much do you pay hiim when his last contract was .8 or so? 3) have the Leafs given up on him?

    Obviously I would rather see them dump a Belak on Florida in return for getting Gary Roberts. I just dunno if Keenan will go for that. It is not like Roberts has Keenan over a barrel.

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