The Colorado Avalanche have acquired Shawn Matthias from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Colin Smith and a fourth-round pick.
Colorado receives: Matthias, who the Leafs signed to a one-year contract worth $2.3 million in the offseason. Stuck in a place between buying and selling, the Avalanche have made a move to bolster their middle-of-the-road offense as they attempt to retain the wild-card spot that they currently hold.
Toronto receives: Smith, a former scoring star for the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL, who has played just one NHL game and has spent the season in the AHL. The Leafs also receive a fourth-round pick to add to their growing pile of picks in this summer’s draft. All a part of the plan.
— Scott Wheeler (@scottcwheeler) February 21, 2016
Matthias, the key player in the trade, is a big body who was basically signed to fill the Leafs’ roster and to give the Leafs a chip to trade for more youth at the deadline. So who’s next for the Leafs? P.A. Parenteau, Mark Arcobello, Brad Boyes, Michael Grabner, Nick Spaling, and Roman Polak are all UFAs at the end of the season and could probably be had for the right price. So between the injuries and possible impending exits, the Leafs’ lines are all but settled at the moment. Smith will continue to play in the AHL for the Marlies, according to Lou Lamoriello.
It would be easier (although not much) to gauge where Matthias fits in with the Avs. It would be a stretch to assume he’ll be a top-six forward, but he seems to provide the kind of scoring that would fit on the third line. Who those third liners will be could be difficult to determine, given the way Patrick Roy seems to choose his lines at random. This trade probably won’t change Matthias’ fantasy value a great deal, as he wasn’t playing on one of the Leafs’ scoring lines anyway. But he could see a small boost in value if Carl Soderberg sticks on the third line.
Fantasy owners are discussing this signing now – give your take right here!
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