Mar 4, 2013, 12:29 PM EDT
Mike Komisarek hasn’t outright asked to be traded, and he wants to play in Toronto (key word: play), but he won’t stand in the way of a deal.
That’s the situation, according to Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis, who met with reporters today after a report surfaced this weekend that the 31-year-old defenseman wanted out.
“What Mike has said is that if it’s in the best interest of the team he wouldn’t stand in the way (of a trade), but his preference is to try and get back in the lineup here in Toronto,” Nonis said, per Sportsnet.ca. “That gives us an opportunity — an open door — if there’s a move that makes sense for us. But he was very clear with me that he came here, signed here and would love to play here.”
Komisarek has one year remaining on a five-year, $22.5 million contract. He’s only played four games this season, averaging 15:21 of ice time.
“You want to play, you want to contribute, that’s the biggest thing. You don’t want to be a passenger,” he said this weekend in response to the report. “You want to be helping the team out and I can just worry about what I can control and that’s come to the rink and keep a positive attitude and sure as well got to be ready if an opportunity comes when and where that it is who knows.
“We’ll see how it unfolds. Right now I’m just taking it day by day. Well see how it unfolds.”
If the Leafs seek a trade, they may be asked to cover part of Komisarek’s salary and cap hit. Which may make it more likely he’s bought out this summer, with no cap consequences as part of the transition to the new CBA.
Toronto hosts New Jersey tonight, looking to build on Thursday’s 5-4 overtime victory on Long Island. The Leafs haven’t won consecutive games since mid-February.
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