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Shanahan: Bolland is ‘the type of player we need’

May 15, 2014, 9:02 AM EDT

Dave Bolland Getty Images

Although a recent report suggested that the Toronto Maple Leafs were interested in trading the negotiating rights to pending unrestricted free agent Dave Bolland, it looks like new team president Brendan Shanahan has other plans.

“I’d like to get him signed,” Shanahan said, per the Toronto Sun. “He’s the type of player I like, the type of player we need.

“This is a guy we want to have back. Dave (Leafs GM Nonis) knows I want him back. But any time you are a UFA, there are other factors involved.”

The big factor, unsurprisingly, is money. Exactly how much is Bolland worth? He’s a two-time Stanley Cup winner that’s capable of stepping up in the playoffs. He’s also solid on the third line and can occasionally serve as a top-six forward thanks to his responsible defensive play and decent work offensively. At the same time, an ankle injury limited him to 23 games in 2013-14.

In February, it was reported that Bolland was seeking $5 million annually, up from his previous cap hit of roughly $3.4 million, and as of early April, the two sides were still significantly apart.

Bolland’s agent, Anton Thun, was noncommittal when responding to Shanahan’s comment.

“I’m pleased that Shanny would say something like that,” Thun said. “David has said all along that Toronto definitely is a consideration.

“At the same time, there are other considerations involved here — things such as market value along with other factors.”

So now we’ll wait and see just how much this “need” is worth to the Maple Leafs.

  1. hockeyornothing - May 15, 2014 at 9:09 AM

    C’mon Hawks bring him back

    • esracerx46 - May 15, 2014 at 10:20 AM

      While Bolland’s skill set is missed his cap hit is not. And his cap demands are much to steep for the Hawks. The Hawks have 2 guys younger and cheaper than Bolland in Andrew Shaw and Marcus Kruger. If there weren’t things like a salary cap or a roster cap, hell yeah bring him back. Its not my money.

  2. silversun60 - May 15, 2014 at 9:12 AM

    This is good news for us Leafs fans… I mean the fact that Shanahan is telling Nonis what to do.

    Meddling from the top NEVER turns out badly… right?

    • dueman - May 15, 2014 at 2:04 PM

      “This is a guy we want to have back. Dave (Leafs GM Nonis) knows I want him back. BUT any time you are a UFA, there are other factors involved.”

      Read it again. He’s not telling Nonis what to do because there is a “but” in there that you obviously over looked. Shanny is going to say things like this because he has to as the team President. He was asked a direct question about Bolland…did you expect him to say that he doesn’t want Bolland back?

  3. pjblake2redwings - May 15, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    5mil for a 3rd line center.. this is why the leafs are a joke

    • pjblake2redwings - May 15, 2014 at 9:56 AM

      but then again my Wings did pay 5 mil for Weiss who will prolly only play 20 more games in the next 5 yrs of his contract lol

  4. gret9 - May 15, 2014 at 10:04 AM

    I LOVE Davey Bolland, he was one of my favorites when he was with the Blackhawks, but there is no WAY in heck that he is worth 5 mil a year.

  5. beergold - May 15, 2014 at 10:05 AM

    Bolland works too hard to be a Leaf …… run away and play for an organization that gives a poop about their fans!

  6. esracerx46 - May 15, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    His 3.375 cap hit was on a contract when the salary cap was 56.7 million. With the salary cap projected to go up to 71.1, keeping that same cap hit percentage would inflate Bolland’s hit to 4.232 million per year. One could argue the original contract was an overpayment to begin with as 08/09 was a career year for Bolland scoring 47 points. Since then he has been oft injured playing in 39,61,76,35, and 23 games. With other contracts doled out you can see why they are starting higher than the 4.232 million number. Given everything, I bet he would take that number….if a team doesn’t offer more.

  7. paulwt3 - May 15, 2014 at 11:45 AM

    He’s expensive ans he’s become injury prone, which will only get worse at his age. Hawks saw the injury thing coming with him, which made their decision easy. A good player and valuable if healthy and cheaper than he is.

    • dueman - May 15, 2014 at 2:13 PM

      Injury prone, really? So you’re telling us that the Hawks saw that he was going to be on the bad end of a freak accident, in which Bolland’s ankle tendon would be lacerated, and he would miss more than three quarters of the year? Wow that Hawks organization is good!

      • paulwt3 - May 15, 2014 at 4:12 PM

        Yes, they did. There were expert articles and blogs at the time by knowledgeable fans to the effect that he was becoming injury prone and that the Hawks thought it would only get worse as he went on and got older.

        And yes, they are good. That’s probably why they’re about to win their 3rd Stanley cup in 5 years, while Toronto hasn’t won one since – well, my memory doesn’t go back that far, sorry.

        But yes, more injuries were expected. More missed time was expected. I guarantee the Blackhawks FO had an interesting conversation once he got hurt this year. They know what they’re about.

      • esracerx46 - May 15, 2014 at 7:58 PM

        Not to be ticky tack… But Holland played in 23 games this year. The NHL has and 82 game schedule, so for you to say he missed more than three quarters of the year is incorrect. If he played in 20 games then your statement would be accurate.

        The previous posters point is when a guy plays 237 of a possible 376 games. Injuries are a concern. Whether of the freak variety or not

  8. garybrian - May 15, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    Sign him and dump Clarkson.

  9. newgod99 - May 15, 2014 at 2:17 PM

    This guy is 2-3 years away from being a 4th line center. Please pay him 5 mil shanny. And sign Callahan for 6.

  10. phillyphanatic77 - May 16, 2014 at 3:21 AM

    I know everyone and their moms b*tch about how overpaid Scott Hartnell is… but is 4.75 all that much in an NHL economy where Clarkson makes 5.25 mil (for all of 5 goals), someone is gonna give Dave Bolland 5+ (despite never once reaching 20 goals), and Callahan is gonna receive 6+ from a team like Buffalo. I don’t mean to make this discussion about Hartnell but the guy’s had nine seasons with 14+ goals, and his career pts/gm (.56) is almost identical to Callahan’s (.59). My point being that the NHL marketplace is so far eschew that good players are being paid like great ones, then there’s this perpetual cycle where the owners and GM’s complain about player salaries (that they hand out) and we, the fans, suffer. One thing Holmgren did an excellent job with was setting the market for power forwards like Hartnell and Simmonds (3.9), then with one fell swoop Nonis came in and threw a wrench in everything.

    I understand free agency raises the pricetag but Clarkson should’ve never gotten more than 4/per, AT THE MOST. And everyone knew it. And Callahan’s ceiling should be 5, AT THE MOST. But alas, this is the NHL and the idea of economic responsibility need not apply.

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