Toronto Maple Leafs add veteran goaltender ahead of free agency, acquire Matt Murray from Ottawa Senators
The Toronto Maple Leafs acquired goaltender Matt Murray, a third-round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft and a seventh-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for consideration future.
Ottawa will keep 25% of Murray’s salary as part of the trade. Murray still has two years left on his contract at $6.25 million, leaving Toronto on the hook for $4.7 million of Murray’s cap reached the next two years.
Currently, the 28-year-old Murray, a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Pittsburgh Penguins, plans to be the Maple Leafs’ starting goaltender in the future as incumbent Jack Campbell is expected to enter the roster. free market this week. Toronto had been unable to find common ground with Campbell, the team’s number one goaltender for the past season and a half. Campbell now joins Darcy Kuemper as the top unrestricted free agent when the signing period officially opens at 12 p.m. ET Wednesday.
The Maple Leafs traded last season’s replacement Petr Mrazek to the Chicago Blackhawks last week. Murray is the only goaltender with extensive NHL experience that Toronto has on next season’s roster, although the Maple Leafs will be pursuing another seasoned goaltender to complement him.
Murray was drafted 83rd overall by Pittsburgh in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft and began his career there as a backup to Marc-Andre Fleury. Murray won back-to-back titles in 2016 and 2017, becoming the first rookie goaltender to win back-to-back Stanley Cup championships.
Murray was a pending restricted free agent when the Penguins traded him to Ottawa in October 2020, and the Senators signed him to a four-year, $25 million extension. The goaltender has struggled throughout his tenure in Canada’s capital, posting a 10-13-1 record with an .893 save percentage and a 3.38 goals-against average in of its first season.
In his second season, Murray was winless in his first six games, and Ottawa quickly placed him on waivers in November 2021. After the veteran went unclaimed, he was demoted to the branch. of the American Hockey League, the Belleville Senators. He appeared in two minor league games, going 1-1-0 with a .906 save percentage.
Murray returned to the Senators in January and played well (5-3-2, .937) before dealing with two injuries late in the year. An upper-body injury sustained against the Arizona Coyotes on March 5 placed Murray on injured reserve and marked the last game he would play in a Senators uniform.
Now Murray will have a fresh start around some familiar faces. Murray played his junior hockey with Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds under Maple Leafs Coach Sheldon Keefe and General Manager Kyle Dubas. He also has a long history with Toronto goaltending assessment and development coach Jon Elkin. That could be enough to revive Murray in his previous form as a capable No.1 goalkeeper.