Fantasy Impact: Toronto Maple Leafs Sign Jimmy Vesey
The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed big winger Jimmy Vesey to a one-year deal worth $900,000.
The Maple Leafs get: a 6-3, 202-pound winger who is a three-time 16-goal scorer and, at 27, has never really fulfilled his potential. Toronto was one of the teams back in 2016 who was desperately trying to sign him after he opted to become a free agent.
Fantasy Players Impacted: Vesey still hasn't figured it out at the NHL level. And despite being tried on Jack Eichel's line last season (although admittedly not very much), he couldn't find his way in Buffalo. However, he was coming off a career high of 35 points the year prior, and he had a horrific start to his Sabres career. After starting with two points in his first 19 games, Vesey followed up with a slightly-better 18 points in 45 games after that (33-point pace). Toronto doesn't seem to be done with their moves, and they currently sit over the cap. They also have 17 forwards and nine defensemen legitimately vying for spots. Whichever current forward is traded will have a huge impact on whether or not Vesey can pick up where he left off in 2018-19 and become that 25-goal, 50-point player that is his potential – or if he will simply Pontus Aberg his way out of the NHL. Right now I have him in the lineup as follows:
In the Player Usage chart below (find this in any player profile under the Advanced tab), Vesey wasn't sheltered and he was fairly effective, possession-wise. So he's not a defensive liability and he injects some good size into the lineup. If he can start the season a little faster with Toronto than he did in Buffalo, he has a real chance. Gun to my head, I say Vesey picked a good spot – there were worse places he could go, but also better ones. But he'll have to earn every second of ice time, especially early on.