Who should the Leafs pursue in Free Agency

Free agency is heating up and the Leafs have around 10 million to spend. What do you do if you are JFJ? Good question

If I were JFJ the player the Leafs should pursue the most is Scott Hartnell. Hartnell is 25 and is entering the prime of his NHL career.. The signing of Hartnell would kick the traditional habit of overspending on players that are past their prime and over paying them. Something must change for the Leafs to become winners. Hartnell could a piece in the puzzle that can help the Leafs get back to winning hockey games. Leafs fan would embrace the game that Scott Hartnell could potentially bring to TO
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14 Responses to Who should the Leafs pursue in Free Agency

  1. Peca4PM says:

    We are obviosely not gonna spend on D. If we could unpoad Kubi, we could sign Kariya and Hartnell, and a goalie, maybe for only 1 yr though, because i guarentee JFJ is lookin at Thornton next yr and makin sure he 6-7 mil for him, that will mostly come out of Sundin leaving, but they will need a little more room as well

  2. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    Ryan Smyth, Gary Roberts, Curtis Joseph, are my immediate wish list, with Kariya, Bertuzzi, and Lindros as a "wouldn't it be nice" type thing.

  3. Antero says:

    Thorton will not be a free agent next year.
    if it takes more than 6-7 mill, he is going to get it in San Jose.

  4. lukeleim says:

    Best possible bargain UFA's 2007-2008:

    Vitaly Vishnevski 1.2-1.5 million
    Brandon Bochenski 800,000-1.1 million
    Michael Ryan 600,000-900,000
    Jeff Friesen 800,000-1 million
    Scott Walker 1.8 million-2.5 million
    Josef Vasicek 800,000-1 million
    David Tanabe 800,000-1.2 million
    Bryan Berard 1 million-1.5 million
    Patrik Stefan 1 million-1.5 million
    Todd Bertuzzi 2 million-3 million
    Mathieu Garon 1.5 million-2 million
    Martin Skoula 1.2 million-1.8 million
    Todd White 1.5 million- 2.2 million
    David Aebischer 1.2 million-1.8 million
    Paul Kariya 3.5 million-4.5 million
    Mike York 1.8 million-2.2 million
    Robert Esche 1.2 million-1.8 million
    Curtis Joseph 800,000-1.2 million
    Alexander Mogilny 650,000-1.1 million
    Jeremy Roenick 500,000-800,000
    Gary Roberts 1 million-2 million
    Mark Recchi 1.5 million-2.2 million
    Radek Dvorak 1 million-1.8 million
    Michael Peca 1.5 million-2 million
    Bates Battaglia 750,000-1 million
    Trevor Linden 600,000-1 million
    Jeff Cowan 600,000-800,000

    Worst bargain UFA's 2007-2008:
    Ryan Smyth 6 million-7 million actual worth: 5.5 million
    Chris Drury 6 million-7.2 million actual worth: 5.2 million
    Daniel Briere 6.5 million-maximum actual worth: 6 million
    Scott Gomez 6 million-7 million actual worth: 5.5 million
    Michal Handzus 3.5 million-5 million actual worth: 3 million
    Sheldon Souray 4.5 million-6 million actual worth: 4 million
    Scott Hartnell 3 million-4.5 million actual worth: 2 million
    Scott Hannan 4 million-5 million actual worth: 3 million

  5. Glucker says:

    just a few things…
    Roberts is 2-2.5
    Joseph 1.5-2
    Peca 2-2.5
    Mogilny will probably retire… he's only played 34 nhl games since the lockout, and was even sent down to the minors… many players had trouble coming back from 1 year of lockout… this guy has been out of the NHL for almost 3 years…actually in the last 4 years he's only played 84 NHL games, 13 in the playoffs.

    as for Hartnell, signing him for 3-4 mill will be great down the road

  6. Hoondog2 says:

    The Leafs need gap fillers for 1 more year before impact players such as Tlusty and Kulemin start to graduate to the big club.  The Leafs should be looking at 1 year deals until next year.

    Trade McCabe to NYI for Hunter and pick/picks.
    Trade Pohl to move up in the draft.
    Sign Peca and Bertuzzi to 1 year deals
    Sign a good backup for 1 year.

    Tucker               Sundin                Bertuzzi
    Antro.                Welly                  Ponik.
    Steen                Stajan                 Hunter
    Kilger                 Peca                   Devereaux

    Kaberle                Kubina
    Colaiacovo            White
    Gill                      Kronwall

    Raycroft
    (Cujo, Weekes)

    This team gets the Leafs in the playoffs, and valuble experience for next year.

    It is not unrealistic to think next years team could look like this

    Sundin              Thornton              Bertuzzi
    Antro.               Wellwood             Ponik.
    Steen                 Stajan                Tucker
    Kulemin              Tlusty                 Hunter

    Kaberle                 Kubina
    Colaiacovo             White
    Stralman               Kronwall

    Raycroft
    Pogge

    This team could compete with anybody!

    I'm not saying this would happen, but we have the freedom to pursue these kind of options.

  7. Peca4PM says:

    Maybe, but he has specifically displayed a desire in TO…..that is a factor

  8. TimmyHoHo says:

    I think that moving McCabe would be one of the best things the Leafs could do this off-season, but if you can't move him or get value then I think moving Kubina should be plan B.  

    As I have said in other posts, I wouldn't be surprised if the boo's are getting to McCabe.  I know everyone is thinking the Islanders are the most likely destination, but it's possible he could be traded to the Rangers or the Devils.  Personally I think trading him to a division team or conference team would be ideal as we could take advantage of his weak defensive play.  Getting a young player could be the best value for a guy like McCabe as it is really a salary dump.  I would love to steal a guy like Marc Staal from the Rangers, but it isn't likely and I try to be realistic.
    My number one choice would be to try and trade McCabe or Kubina for Turco.  Their backup rookie Smith had amazing numbers and the Stars need offense; so, throw in a pick (even a first) or two to make it appealing and the Leafs could move Razor to the bench and let him learn from one of the best.
    I think next up is Hartnell.  Still 10 million in caproom as I believe McCabe and Turco both make 5.7million (cap numbers always seem different on every site though).  Hartnell will be a three year deal because he would qualify for the new UFA status at 28 (I think).  Probably 2.5, 3, 3.5 for an average of 3million a year for a hard hitting 20 plus goal scorer.
    Next choice is to maximize talent, with about 7 million to spend.  I like Peca (1.5?), Bates(.5mil), Colaiacovo(1.5mil).  Down to 4.5 million.
    Next up is the tricky bit: Kariya or Bertuzzi…whoever is cheaper.  I think Bertuzzi will bouce back from injuries and grossly inconsistent play, but Toronto will be like coming home.  Kariya would be the best fit with Sundin I think, but for both of these guys we would need a "Play for the Leafs"-discount.  The ideal situation would be a 3-3.5 million a year for 1 year. If they are asking too much then I would be just as happy getting Roberts back for year or even Guerin if Roberts returns to Pittsburg.
    All said and done you get this…
    Kariya/Roberts.Guerin-Sundin-Hartnell
    Poni-Wellwood-Antropov
    Tucker-Peca-Steen
    Deveraux-Stajan-Battaglia
    Extra forwards: Pohl and Belak
    Kaberle-Kubina/McCabe
    White-Gill
    Colaiacovo-Kronwall
    Extra: Wozneiwski, Harrison or Stralman
    Turco
    Razor
    Solid.  Hitters and scorers…talent and grit.  Looks like a playoff bound team to me.
  9. TimmyHoHo says:

    I like the look of that team, but I still think Razor is the weakest link.  I also think that the two scoring lines would be a bit different as I doubt Sundin would play as a winger (same with Thornton, but more like Joe than Mats):

    Poni-Sundin-Antropov
    Wellwood-Thornton-Bertuzzi(or Hartnell or Kariya)
    Solid team, but I think they need to plan on scoring 3-4 goals every game at least.   Also, McCabe did contribute a lot of minutes and 60 points…not like he did nothing for the team.  I know he accounted for a bunch too, but I'm not sure that our young d won't make a fair share of mistakes too. 
  10. LEAFS877 says:

    There aren't many teams out there that would take McCabe or Kubina so I like the idea of signing a young, decent player that we can put on the second line. Hartnell would have been a perfect addition but the Flyers got there first unfortunately.

    Take your pick JFJ.
    Handzus, Kariya, Gomez, Drury……  Datsyuk?

    Of course, on the Leafs roster all these players would quaify for the first line.

  11. mojo19 says:

    Not Joseph. 37th in SV% last year. 37th in GAA. And he's just plain bad. In fact he hasn't had a really good season since his 2nd season with the leafs. Then he was decent in his 3rd year in Toronto, average in his 4th with leafsand with Detroit. And now is well below average.

    His problem is he plays inside the net so even when he stops the puck its already over the line, someone needs to teach him to move out alteast a few inch's then maybe he'll be a real goalie again. But like most really old people he's stuck in his ways.

  12. mojo19 says:

    Very good list. Kariya will get more though and Roenick said he'd play for league min.

    I wonder if Maurice would be interested in coaching Vasicek again? Maybe the leafs will go after him as a cheaper signing if they can't land the guys at the top of their list.

  13. mojo19 says:

    Dats signed long term with detroit before the playoffs started

  14. LEAFS877 says:

    never mind then

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