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Maple Leafs Considering a Parting of Ways with Veteran Forward

The Toronto Maple Leafs might be considering a split with a veteran forward who might be too expensive to be a fourth-line forward.

The Toronto Maple Leafs may be moving on from veteran forward David Kampf this summer. Columnist and former NHL player Nick Kypreos recently suggested that Kampf, who has been the Maple Leafs’ fourth-line center and a key penalty-killer, could be shipped out of Toronto. Kampf, known for his defensive skills, carries a cap hit of $2.4 million per season, making him an expensive option for a fourth-line center.

Kypreos wrote in his article in the Toronto Star:

“The bottom-six forwards need some attention as well. Is David Kämpf still in the plans to lead the Leafs’ checking line? There’s a good chance they cut bait there as well. Can he be replaced by prospect Fraser Minton or is it time to look for an NHL-ready player elsewhere?”

David Kampf Maple Leafs trade talk

NHL insider Chris Johnston also says the Maple Leafs could look at moving Kampf, and he might not be the only one. Johnston noted on The Chris Johnston Show:

“They would look at moving Kampf, [Calle] Jarnkrok, or Timothy Liljegren in the right deal. I should be very clear, that is not to say they are trying to get rid of them at all costs, but I think that because of the Leafs’ salary cap, they are pretty tight up against it.

He adds that Toronto made some key changes to their blue line and in goal. Still, he notes, “I think they will have to get creative to address any changes they want to make at forward.”

Not Enough Room to Keep the More Expensive Kampf

Kampf’s role on the team has primarily been defensive, and he has been a fixture on the penalty kill over the past three seasons. Those are valued attributes, but his salary is a problem. Not only that, his faceoff percentage dropped to 50.9% this past season, his worst since joining the Leafs.

He is currently in the second year of a four-year contract signed in June 2023. With the Leafs currently over the salary cap by $694,000, according to CapFriendly, freeing up Kampf’s salary could help alleviate their cap issues.

Next: Oilers Re-Sign Raphael Lavoie to 1-Year Contract: Trade Possible?

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