Is Vincent Lecavalier Headed To The Maple Leafs?

Let me say right off the bat that I don’t buy it. However, Louise our Montreal Correspondent dug up this article en francais about the above subject. Let if be known that the rumor mill is in full force when it comes to Vinny. The common theme is that the nay saying Lightning ownership are going to have to move him this summer, prior to his NTC clause kicking in. The Habs have the most money to spend should they decide to spend to the cap. They are one of the few teams that could absorb Vinny’s 7.7m per year cap hit for the next 11 years. In any event, here is what the French scribe had to say… Louise hasn’t of yet provided me with a source so I can’t provide one just yet…

The general gist of the article is that Brian Burke has done some favors for the Lightning (taking some bad salaries off their hands) and therefore, Vincent Lecavalier is heading to Toronto.. In that my french is lousy, Louise has provided both the french copy and a translation of the article:

“Depuis son échange avorté avec Lawton en janvier, Gainey a constaté que les Maple Leafs de Toronto ont rendu de bien grands services au Lightning à la date limite des transactions. À une époque ou le budget du Lightning était tellement serré que Koules et Barrie limaient des coches sur les pièces de dix sous afin de fabriquer d’autres pièces de dix sous, Brian Burke s’est présenté à eux en sauveur.”

Since the failed trade(for Vincent) with Lightning GM Brian Lawton in January, Gainey has come to realize that the Toronto Maple Leafs have done a few favors for the Lightning before the trade deadline. With the Lightning owners Oren Koules and Len Barrie facing an extremely tight budget, Brian Burke presented himself as their savior.

“Il leur a fait la faveur d’acquérir le gardien Olaf Kolzig (qui était blessé jusqu’à la fin de la saison), le défenseur Jamie Heward (qui était aux prises avec une commotion cérébrale) et le vétéran défenseur des ligues mineures Andy Rogers (sérieusement blessé au dos) afin d’alléger leurs fins de mois.”

Burke did the Lightning the the favor of taking goalie Olaf Kolzig (injured till the end of the season), defensemen Jamie Heward (concussion) and veteran defensemen Andy Rogers (seriously injured back) in order to save the Lightning a fortune of money.

“Et Gainey sait parfaitement que Burke, un autre de ses bons amis, ne rend pas ce genre de service pour rien.”

And Gainey knows perfectly that Burke, who Gainey considers another good friend, is not the kind of person to do favors for nothing.

“À part Gainey, Burke figure parmi les très rares directeurs généraux qui ont suffisamment d’argent et de marge de manœuvre sur leur masse salariale pour acquérir le contrat de Lecavalier.”

Besides Gainey, Burke is among the veryfew GM’s who have sufficient money under the salary cap to acquire Lecavalier and Vinny’s accompanying contract.

“Voyez-vous le portrait ? Le repêchage aura lieu à Montréal en juin. Et dans un Centre Bell plein à craquer, les partisans du Canadien auront de très fortes chances d’apprendre que Vincent Lecavalier poursuivra sa carrière à Toronto.”

Can you picture this ? The draft is being held in Montreal in June. The Bell Center will be filled to capacity, and there is a good chance that Habs fans could learn in their own arena, that Lecavalier, whom Habs fans clearly covet will move on to play in Toronto!

Let wagging tongue wags! I would be stunned if Vinny ended up in Toronto. However Watters was talking along those lines the other day too. Would Burke take Vinny off the bolts hands to get to number 2? I know, you don’t “take Vincent Lecavalier” off one’s hands…He is a superstar… These are strange times in Tampa though…Wilbur said that the only way the Leafs make a deal for Tampa’s 1st round pick, the second overall, and not include their own first rounder, 7th overall would be if the Leafs took a bad contract off of Tampa’s hands…

All that is a long way from Vincent Lecavalier being a Maple Leaf. The one point that makes this interesting is that Burke doesn’t do favors for nothing. I know he got a 4th round pick back, but Tampa came out way ahead as they were in dire financial straits. Burke took serious cash off their hands… Burke not doing favors just for the sake of doing so, how true that may be. Most rumors have Vinny headed to Montreal…could you imagine him being dealt to Toronto at the Bell Centre????


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April 26, 2009 10:01 pm

Habs fans would go bananas….but….the Habs have a ton of cash available next year and Gainey will likely be desperate after what happened this year. I still say Vinny ends up in Montreal…maybe JayBo too.

April 26, 2009 10:46 pm

That would be crazy for the leafs. . . imagine JT and VL on the same team. . . but leafs would probably have to give up their 7th overall pick, and kaberle and a few other young players. . . After all if the leafs are picking up vinny, they can’t have tight hands either. . . even tho the leafs can afford it, they already have a lot of bad contracts. Hopefully the leafs get Vinny and plus i herd Bob gainey very displeased with Tampa because at the trade deadline all the pieces were in place to make a trade and tampa last minute pulled it off. . . And Bob Gainy basically said that the montreal canadians were used by tampa for tampa to showcase their players around.

The Meatriarchy
April 27, 2009 6:06 am

I don’t think Tampa gives up their first overall plus Lecavalier. I think they give up Lecavalier because he is way to pricey for the team right now and hang on to the first overall because JT or whoever they sign can only be signed to an entry level contract.

And if you can’t afford to sign guys to entry level contracts you should just fold your tent.

Pension Plan Puppets
April 27, 2009 8:28 am

Meat is right. This trade happens because the Lightning know that they can come close to replacing Lecavalier with Tavares at # 2. I think it makes sense for both teams involved and that if Brian Burke does it that he is one crafty SOB. Also, I’d probably die laughing at Habs fans.

April 27, 2009 8:49 am

“This trade happens because the Lightning know that they can come close to replacing Lecavalier with Tavares at # 2”

I like JT .. but he’s no where close to Vinny. Vinny is proven and in his prime.

wayne scarlett
wayne scarlett
April 27, 2009 9:50 am

I hope and pray that it does happen,but I doubt that it will.I also will not be anywhere near montreal if Burkie pulls this off at the Draft.Can you say “Massive Riots”?

Remember,this is a town that went on a rampage after they Wo0n(Stole) the first round last season.This would be just another reason for havenot fans to show their lack of class,not that they really need one.

April 27, 2009 10:04 am

I’ll put it in the “would love to see it” but “unlikely” categories. However, I do not think he will be going to the Habs, if he is moved, and I think that was finalizaed when Gainey blasted Lawton, he obviously knew there’s not a chance in hell Lawton would deal him Vinny after that (not sure what Gainey’s strategy was with that outburst?). I think it depends on just how bad an economic situation Tampa is in, a lot of conflicting reports on this; if it’s bad enough there’s only a handful of teams who could take the salary, and the Leafs are one.

Pension Plan Puppets
April 27, 2009 10:11 am

“I like JT .. but he’s no where close to Vinny. Vinny is proven and in his prime.”

I should have written that in theory they can come close to replacing Lecavalier especially considering he has only really had 2 seasons worthy of such respect when he put up 108 and 92 points. Other than those two he has not even been a point a game player. If JT is as good as the scouts say then he can probably hit that level during his entry level contract which allows the Lightning to spend the money on shoring up their goaltending and defence.

April 27, 2009 12:11 pm

VL at 7 mil per till he’s 40?
this makes no sense

April 27, 2009 1:04 pm

I don’t think this deal happens for several reasons: Leafs don’t have the right parts to make a trade; Vinny’s too old for the Leafs talent curve; Cap is going to shrink, best to save money for younger players; with the current CBA set to expire in 2011, why commit to a guy signed at $10M/year to 2013?

April 27, 2009 5:50 pm

Lecavalier isn’t going for free. Montreal will still deal. Vancouver could easily be in the mix.

I hope we don’t take this guy. Malone maybe, but not Lecavalier.

April 28, 2009 5:34 pm

Trade the whole team,except Shenn,for Ovechkin

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