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Leafs hand Mason Raymond tryout offer

Sep 8, 2013, 9:24 PM EDT

masonraymondgetty Getty Images

The Toronto Maple Leafs invited speedy forward Mason Raymond to training camp with a professional tryout offer, TSN,  Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston and the Toronto Star’s Damien Cox report.

Raymond expressed his excitement to Next Sport Star’s Josh Rimer via texts.

“I am grateful to be given the opportunity to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs, an original six team,” Raymond said. “I look forward to the challenge.”

It’s a deft move for a Maple Leafs front office that has been awfully busy this summer.

If nothing else, it could put more heat on holdout center Nazem Kadri (and to some extent, defenseman Cody Franson) to sign a deal that’s friendlier to the Leafs. With a little under $5 million in cap space according to Cap Geek’s numbers, Raymond could put a squeeze on Kadri’s earning potential … even at a discounted rate.

While Raymond’s skating ability conjures visions of bigger things, he hasn’t really put together the kind of offensive seasons one would hope for (aside from a 25-goal, 53-point campaign in 2009-10). Even so, you’d expect more than just a tryout offer from one of the NHL’s 30 teams.

  1. loinstache - Sep 8, 2013 at 9:50 PM

    Mason really hurt his chances with his performance in the latter half of the this past season. He started strong and Canucks fans were very hopeful that he was coming back to his pre-injured form. A lot of us forgot that he actually he has a powerful wrister to go along with his top tier speed, due to a wrist injury that was in the shadows of his back injury from Boychuk’s interference. That production and ice presence simply vanished however, and we continued to watch the speedy ghost who hugged the periphery of play away from effective offensive areas. He definitely has the ability to be an effect PKer and secondary scorer, but he’s frustratingly soft and never seems to have that extra gear come play-offs.

    Good guy otherwise.

    • bakedbees - Sep 9, 2013 at 2:49 PM

      waaaaa…still crying

  2. lowenni - Sep 8, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    I wonder if the Leafs handed him this tryout just to scare Kadri a little bit. Sort of to say, ‘we want you back, but we’ve got a backup plan if you can’t meet our terms’.

  3. canucks30 - Sep 9, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Well, he skates fast, falls down a lot, and… that’s about it.

    • blomfeld - Sep 9, 2013 at 10:17 PM

      Nicely stated pal about someone who only ‘yesterday’ was one of your own … and you wonder why I refuse to support the local cause here ?

  4. Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 9, 2013 at 1:15 AM

    Just a tryout contract. Nothing to get too excited about. Since it looks like Nauseam Kadri’s ego will be holding out, they’ll need someone to fill in a roster spot for the preseason.

    Same reason the Blues gave Ryan Whitney a tryout contract. Just in case Alex Pietrangelo decides to hold out.

    • rpettit123 - Sep 9, 2013 at 3:22 AM

      Ego my ass tell me if you had his talent and a carreer expectation of just 10 years in the NHL you wouldn’t want the most out of your salary to say you wouldnt just goes to show how much of a liar you would be. Everybody wants to make an income befitting of their talent. To say you would go to work for someone who would pay you 10 times less than your worth makes you a lunatic by anyones standard. Whats your EGO paying you?

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 9, 2013 at 1:20 PM

        That’s the dumbest argument I’ve ever read. Handful of sentences and you managed to squeeze in two straw-man fallacies, a hyperbole and a hole lot of hot air.

        First of all, Kadri’s never played a full 82 game season, EVER… but wants to get paid like he has. That’s what I call an ego. Do you often ask your boss to get paid for experience/knowledge/skills you don’t have? That is what Kadri is doing.

        Secondly, the Leafs aren’t offering him 10 times less than he’s worth. They’re offering him what a player who’s never played a full season should be offered… a short term bridge deal. This is Kadri’s chance to prove he’s an elite player, not just someone who got lucky while players were still getting back to game-shape after the lockout. The kid is good, but he has a lot to prove for the money he’s asking.

        If Kadri is as good as he thinks he is, then proving himself shouldn’t be an issue. If he took a bridge deal and produces the way he did last year (at a 70+ pts pace) then he WILL get paid and get paid very well.

        Kadri should take a page out PK Subban’s book. Last year Subban wanted $5M per season for 5-6 years, similar to what Kadri is allegedly asking for, Bergevin got PK to sign a 2 yr bridge deal to prove himself and he did. Now Bergevin probably wishes he would have given him the 5M, because now he has to sign a Norris winner. Norris noms make $7M+

        Now back to the point of the article, which you clearly missed, Kadri appears to be on the verge of holding out. He might sign before preseason starts, but he also might not… IF he doesn’t the team still needs a player to fill in while Kadri is figuring out his place in the NHL. Enter Mason Raymond with a tryout deal.

  5. rpettit123 - Sep 9, 2013 at 3:17 AM

    To treat the second best scorer in the shortened season is a real slap in the face for Kadri. Naz doesn’t deserve this kind of treatment and to be brutally honest I would look at other avenues if I were in Kadris shoes, even if it was a shortened season the same goes for the other 18 guys on the team who didnt score squat any way you look at it he deserves better from the leafs but thats their style screw over the talent and make them look like the bad guy. Toronto deserves to lose him Hopefully someone who knows real talent will pick him up so he can say screw you to Toronto.

  6. blomfeld - Sep 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM

    Notwithstanding the painful and difficult injury, it’s obvious that ‘something’ must have happened between Raymond and Canuck’s management ? … dare I say Keith Ballard ? … Cody Hodgson ? … Cory Schneider ? … Willie Mitchell ? … Mathias Ohlund ? … Ed Jovanovski ? … etc, etc, etc

    ps: I also can’t believe this change of tack by Canuck’s House Radio TEAM 1040 ? … talk about going from one extreme to the other ! … I’m not sure what these guys are thinking (smoking) but at least this is guaranteed to be ‘good’ times ! :)

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