Well, the deadline is over—sort of anyway. As of right now people are still lined up to make trades official. However, one thing I know right now is that Dominic Moore is no longer a Leaf, mainly because they couldn’t come together on a contract.
The question is, was Moore worth what he wanted?
From what I have heard, Moore was looking for $2.7-3 million, which he lowered to $2.5 million towards the end. The Leafs, however, were only willing to offer $1.8 million (thanks to Derek Harmsworth for those stats). The differential there is roughly $700,000.
For you and me, big difference; for an NHL player it is still a rather large sum of money, but compared to the millions they get each year? Yeah, right.
Moore’s stats indicate to me he may not be worth everything he wanted, but I would still be trying to narrow that $700k gap. 41 points so far this year in 63 games—not amazing, but they’re still pretty solid stats that's for sure.
Let's take a look at his numbers and take a look at how much his game has improved since signing with the Leafs a year ago.
Before he came, his personal high in points was 18, which dated back to his rookie season with the New York Rangers. In the preceding two seasons, Moore managed only 20 points total. Last year with the Leafs he had 14 points in 38 games. Not much was expected from him this year.
Defying all expectations and surprising us all in the last year of his contract, Moore exploded and looked like a new man—a man the NHL had never seen before.
The Leafs didn’t expect that he would be asking for almost $3 million this year. Apparently they didn’t think he was worth it. Perhaps $3 million wasn’t the right number, but neither was $1.8. The $2.5 Moore was asking for at the end seemed reasonable to me.
In recent weeks Moore was arguably the Leafs' top player on the ice. On Leafs This Week, I named him in my three stars of the week three straight times.
In today’s NHL, $2.5 million seems to be right around average, with the average player salary being roughly $2 million. With the fact that Moore seems to be playing like a little more than the average NHL player, he deserves a little bit more money, right? Right!
Basically what I’m saying is that the gap the Leafs left in what he wanted and what they were offering was too big. I would be willing to offer some around the area of $2.2, maybe $2.3 million if that’s what it took to maintain the services of Dominic Moore.
I would like to know what the exact numbers were. Did Brian Burke try to close the gap? Whatever happened, Moore is no longer a Leaf, and it’s a sad day for me.