Mail Call! Leafs defenseman as a forward? Who to watch on the Toronto Six and more…

It’s mail time again. That magical time of the week when we rely on our readers to help us come up with ideas for our content. We had quite a few interesting questions today, so let’s get right at them…

What do you think of playing Morgan Rielly as a forward rather than trading for one?
— David Mac Isaac (@tie_domi10) January 25, 2021

Jon: I think back to my early days of being a Jets 1.0 fan, and how they lacked forward depth, so they’d use Phil Housley as a forward on the power play. Given that Rielly is in many ways similar to Housley, in that he’s a speedy puck carrier/distributor lacking a heavy shot, and has questionable defensive abilities, I’m not opposed to the idea, in theory, but in practice I think he’s better off on the blueline.
The Leafs aren’t so deep defensive, that Rielly wouldn’t still be considered one of the top six options covering his own zone. He’s also one of the best at moving the puck out of his zone once the Leafs have possession. I get that Rielly is frustrating at times, but really, where …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Mail Call: Leafs lose Dell, Hockey on Lake Ontario, Bogosian thoughts and more…

Welcome to our first mail call of the regular season. Looking at the standings, the 3-1 start looks pretty good. Watching the games  or diving into the stats on the other hand has led to a lot of uncertainty about this team. Luckily we are very smart and have all the answers that Leafs Nation seeks. Let’s get at it…

Interest in non Leafs Q ? Curious about how cap/NHL rules work re retained salary transactions.
— John Stevens (@john__stevens) January 18, 2021

We decided to hand this question over to our resident Brendan Pridham, Earl Schwartz. You’ll be hard pressed to find someone who understands the CBA and the salary cap better than Earl, and we’ll continue to exploit his knowledge until a team hires him away from us.
Earl: 
In the realm of CBA topics, retained salary is relatively simple! Teams cannot retain more than 50% of a player’s cap hit in a single transaction. If a player has a $4m cap hit and the trading team agrees to retain 50%, the receiving team gets said player at a cap hit of $2m and the original team retains a cap hit of $2m. If the player’s salary …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation