The value of Spezza and the availability of Hamilton
In this Father’s Day edition of Toronto Maple Leafs News & Rumors, I want to share a rumor that Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dougie Hamilton may be interested in coming to the Maple Leafs. Additionally, I will comment on the value Jason Spezza brings to the team and the organization as a whole.
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Element One: Jason Spezza is a player for sure
Luke Fox’s Quick Shift Chronicle yesterday covered several different topics. One of his most interesting sections was his commentary where he extracted the transcript of a media interview where forward Jason Spezza spoke about his goals with the team. One statistic stood out. Only one other NHL player who didn’t have an entry-level contract had “more offense for his money” than Spezza. That player was Conor Garland of the Arizona Coyotes.
Specifically, each of Spezza’s points cost $ 23,333 in 2020-2021. Of all the UFAs waiting for the end of the year, Spezza was the best value for money. Only Garland (at $ 19,871), which is a pending tender, provided a more efficient cost-per-point estimate.
Besides age, Fox also pointed out a difference between Spezza, 38, and Garland, 24. Garland, whose last contract was for $ 775,000, has salary arbitrage and should be able to build on his strong season for a nice raise. On the flip side, Spezza just re-signed with the Maple Leafs for his third straight NHL minimum contract.
In a lengthy media interview at the end of last week, Spezza showed his commitment to helping his team when he admitted: “If I could take less, I would. I love to play the game. ”
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Spezza spoke of his dynamism: “I love competition. The pursuit of the Cup is at the forefront of my mind every day. All I can do to help the team acquire better players is kind of why I take the league minimum and advance. It’s been a few years now, so I don’t think it’s a story anymore, but I just want to play for a good team. Anything I can do to help is awesome.
The point is, Spezza’s career NHL earnings hit $ 90 million as well. Yet given his other charitable work, including his organize efforts to help AHL Marlies players who didn’t earn the full AHL salary during the pandemic, I believe.
Point two: Dougie Hamilton would be interested in the Maple Leafs
Elliotte Friedman was a guest at Sportsnet’s 590 The Fan’s “Lead Off” radio show yesterday and reported that there may be a mutual interest in bringing Dougie Hamilton to the Maple Leafs. Certainly, there is a mood in Toronto to make drastic changes to the roster and general manager Kyle Dubas is in a tough spot with defenseman Morgan Rielly’s contract expiring after the 2021-22 season.
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There is no doubt that Dubas loves Rielly, just like most Maple Leafs fans. However, being caught again in the situation of losing “internal rentals” at the end of their contracts costs the team salary cap space and additional players. As I complained in an article a few days ago, it doesn’t seem like a good organizational business practice to keep losing assets for no return.
Friedman believes Hamilton would be a stabilizing factor on the team’s defense and reported that his sources believed Hamilton was interested in coming to the Toronto side (he’s from the region). Friedman also reported that he was concerned Hamilton might not fit the team well due to his personality.
My research on Hamilton suggests that he is extremely introverted and calm in the locker room, which can be taken in different ways by different people, including his teammates. He’s more likely to take a solo stroll on the Philosopher’s Walk at Toronto’s St George’s Campus and then spend a day at the ROM (Royal Ontario Museum) rather than hanging out with the guys. Personally, I understand.
Yet when I look at his career, he hasn’t been more than three seasons with any team he’s played for – the Boston Bruins, the Calgary Flames and now the Carolina Hurricanes. That said, he’s a great offensive defender – who improves his defensive game. He could be a good partner with the defensive spirit TJ Brodie or Jake Muzzin.
The question remains whether he can withstand the scrutiny that always comes with playing in Toronto. Friedman noted that Hamilton has the kind of personality who accepts challenges and might want to prove to people wrong about his abilities to gamble and survive in the Toronto market.
Obviously, if Hamilton comes, it means Rielly needs to be traded this offseason. The fly in the ointment is that, as Sportsnet’s Luke Fox wrote, Rielly is “a part of the heart and soul of the Toronto roster.”
What’s next for the Maple Leafs?
For the Maple Leafs players and all THW readers who are fathers, I wish you all a Happy Father’s Day. I especially want to wish my own son Jim, who writes the THW rumors, a Happy Father’s Day. It’s a day that I remember a lot of our own pleasures around hockey – collecting hockey cards, going to games in different NHL cities, and these days just talking about the players and what they mean for their teams.
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I hope all of you fathers will have a moment to remember similar experiences with your children. You have my best wishes.
The former professor (Jim Parsons, Sr.) taught for over 40 years in the Faculty of Education at the University of Alberta. He’s a Canadian boy, who has two degrees from the University of Kentucky and a doctorate from the University of Texas. He is now retired on Vancouver Island, where he lives with his family. His hobbies include playing with his hockey cards and just being a sports fan – hockey, the Toronto Raptors and CFL football (thinks Ricky Ray personifies the way a professional athlete should act).
If you’re wondering why he doesn’t use his real name, it’s because his son – who is also Jim Parsons – wrote for Hockey writers first and asked Jim Sr. to use another name so that readers wouldn’t confuse their work.
Because Jim Sr. had worked in China, he adopted the Mandarin word for teacher (老師). The first character lǎo (老) means “old” and the second character shī (師) means “teacher”. The literal translation of lǎoshī is “old teacher”. It became his pen name. Today, apart from writing for Hockey writers, he teaches graduate students research design at several Canadian universities.
He can’t wait to share his thoughts on the Toronto Maple Leafs and how the sport is more involved in life. His Twitter address is https://twitter.com/TheOldProf