As you would expect on the first day of NHL free agency, there has been a wide array of signings. You can check them out right here.
There was also a trade of note today between the Leafs and the Penguins. Here is the write-up from the Penguins...
The Pittsburgh Penguins have acquired forwards Phil Kessel and Tyler Biggs and defenseman Tim Erixon from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Kasperi Kapanen, Nick Spaling, Scott Harrington and a 2016 third-round draft pick previously acquired from New Jersey, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.
The deal also involves conditional draft choices based upon the following conditions:
*If Pittsburgh qualifies for the 2016 postseason, Toronto will receive the Penguins’ 2016 first-round draft pick; and the Penguins will receive Toronto’s 2016 second-round selection. The second-round pick would be the one Toronto originally acquired from Pittsburgh for Daniel Winnik earlier this year.
*Should Pittsburgh miss the 2016 playoffs, Toronto will INSTEAD receive the Penguins’ 2017 first-round pick; with Pittsburgh getting Toronto’s 2017 second-round selection in return.
*If the Penguins were to miss the postseason the next two years, Toronto would receive Pittsburgh’s 2017 second-round draft pick and Pittsburgh would not receive a draft pick.
Kessel is signed through the 2019-20 season. Toronto is retaining 15 percent of his salary, making Pittsburgh’s cap hit $6.8 million.
Kessel, 27, is one of the top goal scorers in the NHL. During the last five years, his 151 goals rank fourth (tied) in the NHL behind only Alex Ovechkin (206), Steven Stamkos (202) and Corey Perry (178).
During that same time period, Kessel ranks eighth (tied) among all NHL players with 339 points, making the Penguins the only NHL team with three players ranked in the top-15 during that span. Sidney Crosby is fifth (tied) with 347 and Evgeni Malkin is 15th with 321.
Since breaking into the NHL, 6-foot, 200-pound Kessel has scored 247 goals in 668 games, including seven-straight years breaking 20-goal and 50-point barriers.
A five-time 30-goal scorer and three-time NHL All-Star (2011, ’12, ’15), the 6-foot, 202-pound Kessel paced Toronto with 61 points (25G-36A) in 82 appearances this past season. Kessel tallied eight times on the power play and had four game-winners.
Two seasons ago, the right-handed shooting Kessel equaled his career high by scoring 37 goals and totaling 80 points in 82 games with the Leafs.
Kessel, who hails from Madison, Wisconsin, has played nine NHL seasons, the past six in Toronto and his first three in Boston, since the Bruins made him the fifth-overall selection in the 2006 NHL Draft. Since then, his 247 goals are the most scored by a player drafted in ’06, 24 more than second-place Jonathan Toews (223).
The winner of the 2007 Bill Masterton Trophy after overcoming a bout with cancer, Kessel has registered 520 points (247G-273A) in 668 career regular-season games. He’s added 13 goals and 21 points in 22 postseason contests.
Kessel, who is the NHL’s highest-scoring American player the last seven years with 217 tallies, is one of the league’s most-durable players. He has played in 446-consecutive regular-season games dating back to Nov. 3, 2009; and he has played every game for his team in six of his nine seasons.