After suggesting earlier this week that the Maple Leafs cheat the system when it comes to utilizing long-term injury reserve, winger Joffrey Lupul released a statement via his Twitter account, announcing that he wouldn’t be seeking a second opinion on his failed physical. He had until Thursday to request one. He added that he still hopes to return to playing one day.
He’s entering the final year of his contract with a cap hit of $5.25MM and Toronto is expected to place Lupul on LTIR once the season gets underway in order to get back into compliance with the salary cap. Even when that happens, the Leafs will still likely be within $1MM of the Upper Limit as things currently stand. Nathan Horton, who also failed his physical and isn’t expected to resume his playing career, was already placed on there back in the summer.
The soon-to-be 34-year-old has played in 701 career NHL games with four different teams, collecting 205 goals and 215 assists. He last suited up in February of 2016 and underwent sports hernia surgery at that time. Assuming he gets the green light to try a comeback for next season, Lupul could be an intriguing candidate for a PTO or a bonus-laden one-year contract next summer.