The Toronto Maple Leafs have announced they have signed forward Nick Ritchie to a two-year contract worth $5 million. The contract carries a salary-cap hit of $2.5 million.
Hearing Nick Ritchie to TOR. Sounds like 2x$2.5M
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 31, 2021
Nick Ritchie Signs With Toronto
The Maple Leafs continue to add depth to their roster with the addition of Nick Ritchie. Ritchie spent the last two seasons with the Boston Bruins. He was originally drafted by the Anaheim Ducks 10th overall in the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft. Ritchie spent the first five seasons of his career with the Ducks before being dealt to the Bruins in February of 2020. At the beginning of the 2018-19 season, Ritchie signed a new three-year deal with the Ducks worth $4.6 million. He just finished that contract playing with the Bruins and hit the free-agent market.
With the Bruins, Ritchie found a role on the middle to bottom six. Last season with the Bruins, Ritchie compiled 26 points (15 goals and 11 assists) in 56 games. His 15 goals were career-high. The best point season of his career came in 2018-19 when he recorded 31 points. For his career, Ritchie has 137 points (59 goals and 78 assists) in 350 games in the National Hockey League.
The Maple Leafs continue to reshape who they are as a team. Besides having the scoring up with the core four, the Maple Leafs needed to find someone to replace Zach Hyman, who left to sign with Edmonton via free agency. The Maple Leafs kept Jason Spezza, Wayne Simmonds, Michael Bunting and Kurtis Gabriel to be tougher to play against. Hyman was perfect for Auston Matthews and Mith Marner. They also signed Ondrej Kase to add some more scoring as well. The Maple Leafs are hoping maybe a guy like Ritchie can fill the void left by Hyman. Considering the Maple Leafs were up against the salary cap there were not many cheap options out there to find. Ritchie is a solid player that can bring the physicality and scoring that is needed. He can play with the top two guys on the team if needed. However, he is best suited for third-line minutes.
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