The Maple Leafs have kept some goaltending depth in the fold as CapFriendly reports that they have signed Michael Hutchinson to a one-year contract. The pact is a one-way deal worth the league-minimum $700K salary.
Hutchinson was brought in from Florida in a midseason trade to give them some insurance between the pipes, especially with injuries to Frederik Andersen and Garret Sparks. He did fairly well in five appearances with Toronto before having to be returned to the AHL to avoid needing to run him through waivers. He was back with the big club in the playoffs though and served as Andersen’s backup with Sparks practising away from the Maple Leafs at the time.
The contract represents a considerable pay cut from the $1.3MM he earned in 2018-19 but in taking a cheaper deal, he increased his odds of spending more time with the big club next season. The Maple Leafs are open to moving Sparks but if they don’t find a taker, he and Hutchinson will battle for the number two role next season with virtually identical cap hits. That would make it a battle based on merit and not salary cap considerations which could work well in Hutchinson’s favor based on how he played in the second half last season.