Maple Leafs plan in goal becomes a little clearer after shipping Mrazek to Chicago

MONTREAL — It’s easy to criticize Kyle Dubas’ decision to sign Petr Mrazek to a three-year, $11.4 million contract last summer.
With little salary cap space heading into next season and a $3.8 million hit on a tandem goaltender who had an abysmal first year with the club, the Toronto Maple Leafs GM traded the 30-year-old Czech to the Chicago Blackhawks on Day 1 of the 2022 NHL Draft at Bell Centre.
On the surface, it looks like the Leafs traded another first-round pick to dispose of a problem. In reality, all they did was move down in the draft from No. 25 to 38.
It’s not much of a downgrade and they didn’t have to retain any salary in the deal.
Really, Dubas has Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson to thank for alleviating Toronto’s problem.
Chicago was in a particularly giving mood by making some questionable decisions on Thursday, including trading away 24-year-old forward Alex DeBrincat to the Ottawa Senators for draft picks and 21-year-old centre Kirby Dack to the Montreal Canadiens for an identical haul.
The Blackhawks obvious aim to tank is Toronto’s gain and now they’re left with roughly $10.2 in cap space which will be primarily used to help fill their goaltending needs.
Now it’s just a question of how they go about it.
With incumb …

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Author: David Alter / The Leafs Nation