Today was Christmas Eve for hockey fans. Before we could get the 2016/2017 NHL season underway, teams needed to finalize their roster for opening night. This meant sending some kids down to the AHL, players hitting the waiver wire and cutting veterans on PTO’s.
The Maple Leafs were one of the more active teams before the 5PM roster deadline. With their last place finish in 2015/2016, the Maple Leafs had first dibs on the waiver wire and had some interesting decisions to make with their last roster spots. Here are the transactions the Maple Leafs made today to round out their opening day roster.
Claim Seth Griffith
Mark Hunter alert. Another London Knights alumnus is going to be playing for the Maple Leafs.
The Maple Leafs used their waiver wire position to grab 23-year-old center Seth Griffith. The waiver pick up came as a slight surprise as the Maple Leafs decided to pass on Teemu Pulkkinen. Griffith racked up 77 points last year in the AHL and stays with the trend of picking up young, skilled players with minimal risk.
— AHL Communications (@AHLPR) October 11, 2016
Brooks Laich Sent Down to the Marlies
There was no doubt that there was younger and better options than Laich coming into this training camp. However, since Laich was traded last year from Washington, he has been extremely likable. Although his play has deteriorated over the last few years, he still has qualities that makes this decision tough to swallow.
Josh Leivo Placed on IR
Leivo’s situations was on of the more interesting ones in this year’s training camp. Turning 24 this year, it was make-or-break time for Josh. However, for a player on the bubble, we saw very little of Leivo during the pre-season. We found out today that it was injury related and will be placed on the IR to start the year.
Leivo may have been saved by the fact he was not waiver exempt this year, but he is going to have to perform when he gets back from injury if he expects to remain with the Leafs.
Brandon Prust Cut
Prust’s professional tryout offically came to an end today. It was never thought that he realistically had a chance to make the team, but he did stick around longer than many expected.
What was the result? Here are the Maple Leafs 23-man roster going into the first game of the season.
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) October 11, 2016