Maple Leafs On The Verge Of Losing Ryan Reaves?

Tyler Ball
September 22, 2023  (6:52 PM)

The Toronto Maple Leafs spent significant assets to become a tougher team to play against.

They signed three of the most tough and gritty players on the market Max Domi, Tyler Bertuzzi, and Ryan Reaves.
Now one of those players might be on his way out sooner than everyone thought.

Maple Leafs On The Verge Of Losing Reaves?

New reports suggest that Ryan Reaves's stay in Toronto could be a short one. The Maple Leafs are in a tough spot with the salary cap heading into the season.
One of the few moves they could make to rectify this issue is sending down Ryan Reaves.
Reaves carries a $1.35M AAV on his contract. Waiving Reaves would allow the Maple Leafs significant salary cap flexibility.
Of course, the trade-off is that any team in the league could claim Reaves and take on his contract. One component of Reaves' contract makes him being claimed unlikely in the eyes of most though.

Reaves Contract Could Help The Maple Leafs

The 36-year-old forward signed a 3-year deal with that 1.35M AAV. Reaves is also mostly just a physical force that forechecks and keeps other players safe on the ice with little offensive upside.
This makes a team claiming him a lot less likely. Most teams are not willing to pay an enforcer anymore especially one going into his late 30s.
This move would allow the Leafs to have their flexibility without risking or having to send down younger or better-skill talents.
When the Maple Leafs signed Reaves they likely already knew that this was going to be a scenario heading into the season.
If for some reason a team does claim Reaves though it would be embarrassing for new General Manager Brad Treliving.
The Maple Leafs specifically wanted to get tougher and losing their enforcer for nothing immediately would be a terrible look. It would open the cap space and free the Maple Leafs of the long-term commitment to Reaves though.
Unless there's a trade ahead of time, I still think Reaves hits waivers early on as a pure flexibility move.

He won't get claimed with his contract. He's not an 82-game player and the Leafs would be forced to play the exact same players if he's part of a 20-man roster.

These next few weeks will be intriguing to see if the Leafs make any moves to clear cap space involving Reaves.
As Read On - Maple Leafs Daily -
Newly signed Leaf expected to be waived by the Leafs in the coming weeks
Maple Leafs On The Verge Of Losing Ryan Reaves?

Will the Maple Leafs put Ryan Reaves on waivers?

Yes93245.6 %
No111254.4 %
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