Well, the Toronto Maple Leafs could have some money to spend this off-season. James Mirtle says that the Leafs could have about $13 million in cap space if they choose not to re-sign Dave Bolland and filled their fourth-line with cheap, young players. He goes on to say that they have upwards of $16 million if they buy out the remaining two years of Tim Gleason’s contract. He says that the Leafs could use that money to bring in a “solid centre, a top-four defenceman, two depth forwards and a backup goaltender.
He also notes that if the Leafs trade James Reimer and Cody Franson, the cap space will go up even further. However, he neglects to mention all the rumors about Dion Phaneuf. If he’s moved, that will clear his $7 million of the books. It will be an interesting next couple of weeks with the 2014 NHL Draft and free agency.
Speaking of Phaneuf, Chuck Gormley of CSN Washington suggests that the Washington Capitals could go after the left-handed shot of Phaneuf to play alongside the right-handed Mike Green. Gormley wonders if a package of the 13th overall pick and Marcus Johansson and/or Dimitri Orlov could be enough for Phaneuf.
The guys over at Pension Plan Puppets, along with the entire NHL SB Nation, are taking part in a 2014 NHL mock draft. They have the top five playing out like most mocks with Aaron Ekblad going N0. 1, Sam Bennett No. 2, Leon Draisaitl No. 3, Sam Reinhart No.4 and Michael Dal Colle No.5.
After a few picks, the Pension Plan Puppets chose to pick Halifax Mooseheads forward Nikolaj Ehlers eighth on behalf of the Leafs. Definitely would not be a bad pick, but I seriously doubt that he will be available at the eighth overall pick. However, if he is available, he is the player I would draft if I was Dave Nonis.