A deal tentatively done on Saturday night, has now been completed. The Toronto Maple Leafs have acquired Cody Ceci, Ben Harpur, Aaron Luchuk and a 2020 third-round draft pick from the Ottawa Senators for Nikita Zaitsev, Connor Brown, and Michael Carcone. The deal comes after the Leafs paid Zaitsev’s $3 million bonus, and Brown’s $1 million bonus on July 1st.
— Bruce Garrioch (@SunGarrioch) July 1, 2019
Maple Leafs Acquire Cody Ceci
In Ceci, the Leafs replace one right-handed defenceman with another. The 25-year-old Ottawa native has spent his first six years playing for his hometown team. He has put up 32 goals and 86 assists for 118 career points in 440 career NHL games. Ceci has three assists in 25 Stanley Cup Playoff games. He was originally drafted 15th overall at the 2012 NHL Draft by the Senators.
Last season, Ceci scored seven goals and 19 assists for 26 points in 74 games. He also added 18 minutes in penalties. His possession numbers were 44.1 percent Corsi-For and a relative Corsi of -1.9. Ceci is a restricted free agent, with arbitration rights. He is coming off a one-year, $4.3 million contract. The Senators extended Ceci a qualifying offer to retain his rights. The qualifying offer would be a one-year contract at a minimum of $4.3 million.
Harpur scored his first NHL goal in his four-year career this season. He also added four assists in 51 games. Luchuk split time between Binghamton of the AHL and Brampton of the ECHL.
Senators Add Nikita Zaitsev
Zaitsev, 27, scored three goals and 11 assists for 14 points in 81 games for the Leafs last season. He also added 18 minutes in penalties. Possession wise, he put up a 49.0 percent Corsi-For and -4.0 relative Corsi on the season. Zaitsev did not record a point and played 18:57 per game in the Leafs seven-game opening round loss to the Boston Bruins.
Zaitsev has spent three years in the NHL, all with Toronto. He was originally signed as an undrafted free agent out of the KHL. He put up 12 goals and 51 assists for 63 points in 223 career NHL games. Zaitsev is entering the third year of a seven-year, $31.5 million contract that carries an AAV of $4.5 million.
Brown, 25, scored eight goals and 21 assists for 29 points in 82 games. Over his five-year NHL career, Brown has scored 43 goals and 56 assists for 99 points in 253 career games. Last season Brown’s possession numbers were 49.4 percent Corsi-For with a relative Corsi of -2.9. He is entering the final year, of a three-year deal with a $2.1 million cap hit. He will be a restricted free agent next summer.
Carcone combined for 20 goals between the AHL’s Utica Comets and Toronto Marlies.
OTTAWA, ON – JANUARY 05: Ottawa Senators Defenceman Cody Ceci (5) prepares for a face-off during the second period National Hockey League action between the Minnesota Wild and Ottawa Senators on January 5, 2019, at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, ON, Canada. (Photo by Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)