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02-09-2013, 10:26 AM
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Just a couple points, Franson is RFA, so he has no real threat of leaving this summer. (according to capgeek)

Top 4 forwards for Rangers next year $26 million
Top 4 forwards for Penguins next year $26 million
Top 4 forwards for Leafs next year $20 million

I don't think they have any problems paying those guys that money. If the NHL recovers, and it is looking good, we could see the cap rise and even with the reduced percentage there shouldn't be a problem with the Leafs continuing to pay out that money/cap.

Yes, Kessel will be in the $7 million range. I can't say I'd have been happy with that money prior to his struggles this year. I am thrilled he struggled and in doing so seemed to work harder on other aspects of the game (IMO and others). If he continues to work hard in all zones (although I don't see him ever being good in traffic defensively) he'll earn $7 a season.

If there is any substance to trading him, I'd hope it would be for foundational young pieces. I think the Leafs would have to take a little risk in any trade, but they'd be trading him for a few reasons. I don't think the reason would be because of performance, but because of direction or as someone has stated a no brainer. A massive overpayment would be a no brainer, or a trade like Toews (yes I know not happening so this is just fantasy talk).

If a contender has drafted a stud, and it happens. Sometimes later picks turn out to be steals, they might look at Kessel to put them over the top, kind of like the Kings did in the Carter deal. Kessel, IMO, has more value than Carter, although Carter was locked up forever.

Who the contenders, and which contender has a need for speed and scoring, and a stud / potential stud prospect, and reasonable cap space in 2014+?

Perhaps the most pertinent question should be, would Nonis give up a chance at the playoffs for a team that hasn't made them in close to a decade?

Unless Kessel's camp has made it clear he wants out of the fishbowl I can see a max length, at $7 per.


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