The Toronto Maple Leafs announced a big trade, continuing their busy offseason on Friday afternoon. It’s hard to follow up trading for Cody Ceci and Tyson Barrie, but they’ve done it. The Toronto Maple Leafs announced they’ve sent unsigned draftee Dakota Joshua to the St. Louis Blues in exchange for future considerations.

I’ve talked about Joshua, along with fellow unsigned Leafs draftees Ryan McGregor (returning to the Sarnia Sting for a final season) and Fedor Gordeev before, so Joshua is a bit familiar..

Joshua was drafted in the fifth round back in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. After spending another year in the USHL, Joshua spent the next four seasons with Ohio State University. His sophomore season was a success with 35 points in 33 games.

The red flags have been that his scoring has dropped in his two final seasons, reaching 22 points this season while also leading his team in penalty minutes. As the centreman turned 23 a couple of months ago, his production dipping so young certainly isn’t good news to cope with. Still, Joshua is an effective player and will likely make a good impact at the AHL level.

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As far as we can currently tell, the Maple Leafs aren’t getting compensation from St. Louis as a result of this trade. Future considerations can mean almost anything, but it’s almost certain the Leafs won’t be getting any hockey related compensation here. There’s no corresponding move in the minors like the one made to get Nic Baptiste to Toronto. Basically, we’re not seeing any picks or anything here.

The Blues soon after signed the 6’2 centre to a two-year entry-level contract. It’ll be a $792.5k cap hit at the NHL level, but his salary will be a $92.5k signing bonus paired with a $700k base salary at the NHL level. Joshua is expected to spend the season in the minors where he’ll earn $70k with the Chicago Wolves.

The Leafs probably wanted to get maybe a seventh round pick for Dakota Joshua, but with their rights to him expiring soon, it seems that wasn’t going to happen. Maybe they wanted to have him signed to an AHL deal, but Joshua was likely to fill in as a depth centre in the ECHL, so signing him to an entry-level contract didn’t make sense.

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Really, this isn’t a trade you should care too much about. A D-F prospect probably wasn’t someone they needed, especially considering how deep they are in the ECHL already. Joshua will get a good opportunity in San Antonio and he’ll likely spend the season between the AHL and ECHL.

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