Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Kessel For Picks?

2008-2009 Statistics2010
To Toronto PosAgeGP/MINPointsCap Hit
Phil Kessel F 22 70 60 RFA

2008-2009 Statistics2010
To BostonPosAgeGP/MINPointsCap Hit
2010 1st Round Pick
2011 1st Round Pick
2010 2nd Round Pick

With Phil Kessel still sitting on the shelf with a shoulder injury until November/December and without a contract, his situation does seem to be fairly cut and dry. Why pay the guy if he's not gonna play, right?

Well, even if the Bruins were to try and sign Kessel, there would be all sorts of cap issues, because today they sit in training camp with 19 players signed at an approximate cap cost of $53.8 million, leaving very little room to sign on the remaining players they would need for their 23-man roster, let alone a sniper like Kessel.

This is where the Leafs come in. They have 21 signed at a cap hit of $48.7 million, leaving plenty of room for a guy like Kessel. Even if they sign Kessel long-term, his cap hit will be lowered a bit right away because of the Long Term Injured Reserve. So, they are one of the teams that have plenty of room for him.

The deal above is now floating around the rumour mills online, suggesting that this one is on the table from the Leafs.

I've never been a big fan of Kessel, nor has Brian Burke, but he has proved that he is a goal scorer in the NHL and that you have to give him credit for. He did score 36 goals last season and that's pretty tough to do when you consider only 13 players scored 36 or better. That's the kind of player that the Leafs would do well with having in their line-up, but is the cost of three top end picks worth it?

If you consider the Maple Leafs' drafting history, they would do well with just throwing picks away for established talent. It may not help their youth system, but it would be an easier way to try and win right now, which is the goal for the new Leafs regime.

The Bruins would be wise to take this deal, as they actually do have a good scouting staff and no room on their current roster to put any sort of players that they may receive in exchange.

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