With under 20 games left in the regular season, let’s jump ahead to the 2023-24 campaign and dive into the Toronto Maple Leafs roster. General manager (GM) Kyle Dubas will have roughly $10 million to work with in salary cap space and there’s going to be some tough decisions to make once free agency begins.
While I fully expect the likes of Noel Acciari and Ryan O’Reilly to re-sign contract extensions in Toronto, here’s three current players who won’t be back next season:
One of the team’s most inconsistent blueliners, Justin Holl is a pending unrestricted free agent who will have to look elsewhere for his next contract.
Holl and his $2 million come off the books for Dubas and the Maple Leafs this upcoming summer and with Connor Timmins signed through 2024-25, with the emergence of Timothy Liljegren and with the fact TJ Brodie and Jake McCabe are both signed, and can play the right side, Holl’s running out of room on the depth chart.
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The 31-year-old can be an impact player when he’s at his best on the penalty kill, but unfortunately it’s all the other ice time that has Leafs Nation scratching their heads. He’s a frustrating player to watch at times because of the costly turnovers and missed defensive assignments and with Luke Schenn expected back from baby watch in the very near future, Holl may be out of the Maple Leafs lineup for the rest of this season.
Make no mistake about it, this season, Alexander Kerfoot was in the Maple Leafs plans and they were going to do whatever it took to keep him in the fold. Remember when Dubas sent a draft pick to the Minnesota Wild so they would retain some of O’Reilly’s remaining salary? That was because they didn’t want to have to move Kerfoot over strictly money. However, come summertime, when Kerfoot is an unrestricted free agent looking for a new contract, that’s a whole different story.
Kerfoot is the jack of all trades for the Maple Leafs as he plays all over the lineup and in most situations. He hasn’t produced much this season, especially of late, recording only one goal in his last 28 games. His defensive instincts are what’s keeping his minutes up as he’s been playing alongside Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews on the Leafs first line these past couple of…
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