Just when I finished telling people that the Toronto Maple Leafs were going to forge forward with Captain Dion Phanuef, the team proves me wrong as they ship out Caption Dion, along with Matt Frattin, Casey Bailey, Ryan Rupert and Cody Donaghey to the Ottawa Senators for Jared Cowan, Colin Greening, Milan Michalek, Tobias Lindberg and a 2nd round pick in the 2017 NHL entry draft.
Early reports indicate that neither team will be eating salary from their departed players.
I’m a bit, okay a lot surprised that the Buds found a taker for Dion’s salary which represents a $7-million cap hit through the 2020-2021 NHL campaign.
Clearly the Leafs are serious about re-building for good (finally) and while I’m not a fan of Dion, I certainly can appreciate the difficulty of playing in Toronto and being named captain so quickly. With Karlsson the bona-fide #1 defenseman / rover in Ottawa and Boroweicki the tough-to-play-against hit machine, Phaneuf will fit in just fine there on the 2nd line where his value and contribution will be significant.
This is a great deal for both teams, as the Leafs get rid of salary, they get a 2nd round pick, and they get younger.
The Sens get a stud who will shine in Ottawa as they serve notice to the league that they are for real!
Question: Who will the next captain of the TML be?