July 22, 2014

Michael Amato

2014-07-22

The Leafs signed David Booth to a one-year deal on Tuesday and we’ll have a writeup on the fantasy impact tomorrow morning. It sounds like it’s for just over $1 million, which is pretty low risk. He’ll provide some depth and could fit well on the third line.

The Leafs also hired Kyle Dubas, the 28-year-old now former GM of Sault Ste. Marie of the OHL, as an assistant general manager. Brendan Shanahan’s first real move to put his stamp on the roster.

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Antoine Roussel signed a four-year deal with the Dallas Stars on Tuesday and avoided arbitration in the process. He’s not a terrible depth fantasy option when you consider he had 14 goals to go along with more than 200 PIM in 2013-14. He ranked third in the league when it came to penalty minutes.

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Cody Franson is still looking for his long-term contract, as the blueliner inked a one-year deal worth $3.3 million on Monday. Franson's play last year wasn't great and for my money he was the biggest disappointment on the team. With 33 points and a minus-20 rating, he was far from the level he showed in the previous lockout shortened year that saw him notch 29 in just 45 games. In a way, Franson was a microcosm of the Maple Leafs, as both regressed after a strong 2012-13. It's a good lesson on being wary of small sample sizes.

Still, as I've mentioned before, Franson shouldn't be avoided this year in fantasy circles. He was at the top of the league in hits in 2013-14 and if he can become a 45-point player, he'll be a huge fantasy asset. He averaged nearly three minutes a night on the power play and the looking at Toronto's blue line right now, that number should remain similar this year. Roman Polak and Stephane Robidas aren't stealing any of those minutes.

With that being said, how will the Leaf defensive pairings look in 2014-15? Carl Gunnarsson is gone so Dion Phaneuf needs a new partner and it might be wise to stick either Polak or Robidas with him for a stronger defensive presence. Franson played with Jake Gardiner a lot last season, but Randy Carlyle also opted for the pairin