Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Santorelli Signs With the Toronto Maple Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs continue to acquire bottom 6 forwards with low cap hit heading into next season. Today the Leafs agreed to terms with Vancouver native Mike Santorelli who spent last season with the Vancouver Canucks. The two sides agreed on a one-year deal worth $1.5 million.

For some, this deal could be thought to be a steal from Dave Nonis, stealing Santorelli away from the Canucks after a breakthrough season where he made the team out of camp and posted 28 points in 49 games before a season-ending shoulder injury. Prior to his stint in Vancouver, Santorelli had a 20 goal and 40 point season with the Florida Panthers, however his time there was also cut short due to injury.

There is little doubt that Mike Santorelli has the skills to be a bottom 6 centre/forward, the biggest question is whether or not he can stay healthy, an issue the Leafs have had to deal with a lot as of late. He was drafted by the Nashville Predators in 2004 and has bounced around between the AHL and NHL since that time. Prior to his NHL/AHL career, he laced up for Northern Michigan University where he won the Universities MVP award. If he can stay healthy and beat out competition like Peter Holland, than Mike Santorelli will be a great pick-up for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Tags: Mike Santorelli Toronto Maple Leafs

  • A13276

    Who woulda thunk that Nonis would have a cool $5 million in his sock drawer after all the bloodletting. That’s after accounting for recent signings and RFA money due. Now we can sit back and wait for a player of consequence to become available as a result of a team in CAP trouble without having to move money out or penetrating the 10% CAP overage ceiling. Good work Nonis. Talk about value for your dollars. The bottom 6 has been drastically changed and upgraded. Santorelli can fly, has hands and loves to bang; he became available because he was a find of the Gillis regime (Nucks fans aren’t happy seeing him leave); Kontiola (“I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know”), 5 or 6 NHL teams were interested in him; has skill and one of his strengths is reported as “running a power play” ; Komorov will get all of Kulemin’s quiet minutes and dramatically help last year’s abysmal penalty kill (28th from 2nd when Komorov was here and we made the playoffs); Frattin can play and is tough on the puck. So we have an improved bottom six, penalty kill and defense. And Nonis still has $5 mil in cap space to burn and tradeable assets in Franson and Reimer. And don’t be too surprised that Nylander forces his way into the Leafs top 6; that’s his plan.