17 hours after the Maple Leafs’ 4-2 win over the Edmonton Oilers and Nick Ritchie is placed on waivers.
There was a lot of excitement after the Maple Leafs signed the 26-year-old. Another Toronto-born player coming home, that’s thrilling. Over the 30 games he’s played with the Maple Leafs, Ritchie scored one goal and assisted on seven more.
Eight points over 30 games for someone making $2.5 million over this season and the next — that isn’t good enough.
Toronto has offered Ritchie many opportunities up and down the lineup to prove he belongs, but the 26-year-old has never taken advantage of it.
Now, he’s left at a crossroads.
It’s a difficult decision for Toronto because they’ve been able to go this long without placing any big names on waivers. I think you could argue it was either Ritchie or Pierre Engvall going on the waiver wire.
Engvall, though, has been an integral part of the Maple Leafs fourth line with Jason Spezza and Wayne Simmonds. At five-on-five, the line has a 67.42 CF% and has only given up five high-danger chances against at all strengths this season.
Ritchie on the other hand, at five-on-five, has an xG% of 48.97, which is the second-worst on the team only behind Ondrej Kase. His GF% at five-on-five, though, is the …
Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation