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Suspensions will affect Toronto’s salary cap situation

Sep 23, 2013, 9:14 AM EDT

David Clarkson AP

Last night’s line brawl between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabres will see repercussions come down against players on both teams. One thing Toronto’s front office won’t care for much is how it’ll affect their ability to do business.

The Leafs are looking at losing David Clarkson for 10 games for leaving the bench to fight John Scott. While that was noble of him to do that, his big, new salary cap hit will stay on the record while he sits.

That goes the same way for any player who is suspended as well and as Chris Johnston of Sportsnet shares, both Cody Franson and Mason Raymond may suffer for it.

Franson has been sitting out in a bid to get more money from the team in negotiations and that won’t be happening for the defenceman in the near future. Raymond will have to sign at a bargain price, while adding Franson will be less of a priority with cap space so scarce.

The salary cap aspect of the impending action makes this very awkward for Toronto. Coach Randy Carlyle even recognized this after the game in reference to Clarkson saying he, “made a mistake and now we pay for it.”

That they will and now GM Dave Nonis will have to get really creative through the opening part of the season.

  1. bigkniht37 - Sep 23, 2013 at 9:36 AM

    well frankly even if these guys weren’t getting suspended, how would the leafs maneuver around the cap? it’s not like they’d be on LTIR or anything like that…

    • ejbigg - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:13 PM

      Well with Clarkson suspended and possibly Kessel, those guys stay on the books but two new guys still need to replace them in the lineup. Even if both additional players are at the league minimum it still adds over $1 million to the cap.

  2. btlpper68 - Sep 23, 2013 at 9:50 AM

    Kessel should b suspended 4 games. The first slash is acceptable when he fighting and tied up those 2 slashes r dumb

    • sunderlanding - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:41 PM

      The rest of preseason is good enough. 4 games is crazy. It’s not like Scott was injured.

  3. 950003cups - Sep 23, 2013 at 10:03 AM

    They’ll be fine. Clarkson did what most players (with a spine) want to go when they see that. I remember a Penguin jumping off the bench when Micheal Haley went after goaltender Brent Johnson and Eric Godard jumped the boards to defend him and got the 10 game mandatory suspension. Only bad part of the brawl was hearing Mario Lemieux cry like a spoiled brat that the NHL didn’t have the entire Islanders roster arrested and executed.

    • jl9830 - Sep 23, 2013 at 11:17 AM

      There’s supposed to be a difference between David Clarkson and Eric Godard. I don’t think the Maple Leafs wanted to invest 7 years and $37M in a goon. Now, his cap hit counts against the Leafs while he sits for 10 games, so they can’t even afford to replace him competently. Terrible decision, and they’re really going to pay for it if someone offer sheets Franson.

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 23, 2013 at 11:52 AM

        Clarkson gets paid what he does because he brings a lot to the table. Being en enforcer is one of those things. 10 games is not going to cripple the team what so ever. Especially not the first 10 games of the season. Better than losing Kessel to an injury, letting Scott have his way with him.

      • 950003cups - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:23 PM

        Clarkson did the right thing. Forget about Franson getting an offer sheet. There’s something called “compensation” that a lot of teams don’t wanna give out so fast. If they were gonna offer sheet him, he would have had one by now. For him to accept one without waiting 10 games, it would have to be a big offer, and likely award the leafs a 1st AND a 2nd pick. So, the leafs would have 2 1st rounds, and 2 2nd round picks next year. They’re hoping he gets an offer.

      • sunderlanding - Sep 23, 2013 at 5:02 PM

        I don’t think they care about an offer sheet to Franson. He won’t take anything less than 3 million which means they get a first round pick as compensation.

  4. pxland - Sep 23, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    Good time for the Avs to offer sheet Franson.

    • sunderlanding - Sep 23, 2013 at 5:33 PM

      Go for it. The Leafs will gladly take your first round pick. Can anyone say Varlamov?

  5. anthj99 - Sep 23, 2013 at 11:55 AM

    How awesome and funny would it be if the Sabres offer sheet Franson?

    • pxland - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:01 PM

      That would be awesome. Too bad the Sabres appear to have no designs on actually putting together a decent team, eh?

      • sunderlanding - Sep 23, 2013 at 5:35 PM

        They should do it. The Leafs would gladly take your first round pick.

      • anthj99 - Sep 24, 2013 at 9:56 AM

        Yeah I wish they could be awesome like the Leafs, eh?

  6. mrpinkca - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    I used to thing John Scott was pretty useless. But in the 8:31 that he was on the ice he: got an assist, got two leafs suspended and put a division rival into even more cap trouble.

    More than worth the $750,000 the Sabres are paying him.

    • 950003cups - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:29 PM

      Rangers hired John Scott and the one fight he had was a boring tie up vs Cam Janssen. He was basicaly rendered “useless” by the Rangers and a healthy scratch for the season and never offered him another contract. So I guess he decided to be a bully and pick on Kessel cause he can’t fight other enforcers anymore. Clarkson knew how to tie up Scott from watching Janssen do it.

  7. denverwally - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    Kessel’s got to pay for what he did. Doesn’t matter how big the other guy is, you either fight him or skate away. Using your stick as a weapon is not an option. He is a gutless coward, nothing less.

  8. denverwally - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    And let me add that he cannot use the “self defense” arguement either, since he slashed Scott while Scott was tied up with 3 other “brave” Leafs at the time, and Kessel gave a two handed slash to the back of Scott’s legs, clearly trying to take out his knees. Again, Kessel is a gutless coward.

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