Sunday, January 31, 2010

Giguere Re-Joins Burke

2009/2010 NHL Statistics
To TorontoPositionAgeMINWinsPoints2010 Cap Hit2011 Cap Hit
J-S GiguereGoaltender321,108410$6 million$6 million
To AnaheimPositionAgeGP/MINGoals/WinsPoints2010 Cap Hit2011 Cap Hit
Jason BlakeForward36561026$4 million$4 million
Vesa ToskalaGoaltender321,392716$4 millionUFA

As mentioned in the previous post, the Leafs were not done wheeling and dealing on Sunday, as they managed to off-load another two assets that were rumoured to be on the block in Jason Blake and Vesa Toskala and in return, J-S Giguere has been reunited with former GM Brian Burke.

Without a doubt, this is a deal that again solves problems that both teams were going to encounter through the stretch run and possibly into the summer. The Leafs get a desired number one goalie that has a reputation and the Ducks get some complimenting scoring and a back-up to play behind Jonas Hiller, who signed a new deal on Saturday.

The Ducks are only 5 points out of a playoff spot and the scoring depth that Blake brings to the table might shore up some of their concerns going forward. Blake is a speedy forward that might be able to gel well with Bobby Ryan and Saku Koivu.

Salary CapAs you can see above, this is a deal, which sees the Leafs clear up $2 million in annual cap space, which will be helpful in their plan to rebuild in the summer. The Ducks will only have to carry Blake forward into 2011, which likely sits well with management there, as Toskala isn't considered to be worthy of giving Hiller a good run for the number one job. That does seem to be win-win on both sides of the ledger.

In terms of annual numbers, which doesn't have much bearing as of today, the Leafs are still rubbing some cap ceiling issues with a 23-man roster (which includes Mikhail Grabovski, who is injured, and Viktor Stalberg, who may see some time now that Blake is gone) at an annual hit of $56.4 million. Some maths would offer discounts to that number, like the time that Tyler Bozak and Stalberg spent in the minors, Mike Komisarek nearing qualification for the Long Term Injured Reserve, Grabovski's injury and such. For the 2011 season, I can safely qualify the Leafs at $42.5 million for 12 players signed. Free agency should allow some breathing space for the Leafs.

The Ducks have also seen their fair share of injury time and players up and down from the minors, so their discounts should be pretty good on their overall cap number. The 23-man roster I have down for them at the moment has an annual cap hit of $54.1 million, but Joffrey Lupul and Teemu Selanne should do well enough to take that number down, not to mention the discount of the first 50+ games that Blake and Toskala were paid for in Toronto.

ImplicationsOkay, in the Draft, John P.'s team has been touched again, as Blake is one of his players this season. John is not anywhere near the money race this year, so this doesn't have any large bearing on that race at all. Blake wasn't taken at all in Box 17 of the Sheet, so he has no effect there either. Coincidentally, both Giguere and Toskala were both dropped from the Draft in the first round of the first Waiver Draft this year, so they have done their damage in the pool this year. Only Giguere has any sort of selections of note on the Sheet, as he has 8 picks, that still haven't been changed to Craig Anderson of the Avalanche.

The Ducks are going to struggle to even make the playoffs, but this deal only helps them in the end. The Leafs were doing their best to off-load more trouble and in doing so, they got a goalie that their GM really likes. I don't think this is enough for Anaheim to make the playoffs in the end, but it won't hurt them, especially since Hiller is already known as the number one guy there. The Leafs are looking forward to July 2010 with much anxiousness...

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