• Old Time Hockey League

Malkin headed to Chicago

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced this afternoon that long time player Evgeni Malkin had decided to leave the team for the Chicago Blackhawks as an unrestricted free agent. He reportedly turned down 6-years, $11 million per season with a maximum signing bonus to join the Hawks for a deal worth $12 million per over 5 years. "We wish Evgeni best of luck moving forward, but we look forward to shutting him down when we face-off with the Blackhawks," said GM Garrett Hansford. "While we are disappointed we're going to regroup and fill his spot on the roster." Toronto is believed to have offers out on a forward, defensemen and a goaltender. With Malkin leaving, Tomas Hertl is expected to take over as the #1 centre, with Casey Cizikas and Christian Dvorak also expected to play centre. "We are in a tough division, and this will make things even harder for us," said Hansford. "The one real positive with this is it really opens up the cap space to get creative with some deals moving forward. We've had Evgeni's salary on our cap for years, and to now have $11 million space to work with. I can see us adding between now and training camp, but we'll see. I'm certainly not going to be using all of that cap, we'd like to give ourselves room to add as the season progresses as well."