Is he the new Mason Raymond?
On Tuesday, it was announced the Toronto Maple Leafs have signed veteran forward David Booth to a one-year, $1.1 million deal. Booth had spent the three previous seasons playing for the Vancouver Canucks, but his presence on the team was limited due to injuries.
He’s hoping for a fresh start in Toronto, following in the footsteps of Raymond before him. Both players struggled at times in Vancouver and weren’t exactly missed when they left town. It would be fair to say they left many Canucks fans disappointed.
In 134 career games for the Canucks, Booth recorded 51 points (26 goals, 25 assists). This is a far cry from his days in Florida where he recorded 60 points (31 goals, 29 assists) for the Panthers during the 2008-2009 season alone. Booth’s offensive numbers have been steadily declining over the years so it’s not exactly clear what type of role he’ll play on the Leafs.
He’ll likely fill the hole on the third line opened by Nikolai Kulemin‘s departure, but I’m not sure he’ll bring the same physical presence to it. Injuries have been a major factor throughout Booth’s career so the Leafs are unlikely to put a lot of defensive responsibility on his fragile shoulders.
Of course, if Booth’s somehow able to regain his former offensive form, it’ll be a huge bonus for the Leafs. As it stands, however, that seems unlikely to happen given the limited playing time he’ll see on the team at the outset.
What are your thoughts on the Booth deal? Is it a blind gamble? A depth move? Does he bring veteran leadership to the team?