Maple Leafs making veteran forward Wayne Simmonds available in a trade

Toronto Maple Leafs' Wayne Simmonds (24) drives past New York Islanders' Mathew Barzal (13) during the third period of an NHL hockey game Sunday, Nov. 21, 2021, in Elmont, N.Y. The Maple Leafs won 3-0. (Frank Franklin II/AP Photo)

The Toronto Maple Leafs are making veteran forward Wayne Simmonds available to be traded, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports.

The Maple Leafs reached out to teams making it known that the return for Simmonds is not as important as “doing right by the player.”

The 34-year-old appeared in 53 games last season with Toronto scoring eight goals and 22 points. Simmonds has one year left on his deal that pays him $900,000 and also includes a modified no-trade clause where he would submit a list of 10 teams he would not be willing to be moved to, according to CapFriendly.

Going into training camp, Simmonds knew there was serious competition to make the Leafs roster. With roster decisions looming and the Leafs potentially looking to sign Zach Aston-Reese, who is on a professional tryout, they would need to clear cap space.

“Nothing crazy. Just that it was gonna be a lot of competition. I think that it didn’t really need to be spoken. I think I already knew that,” Simmonds told Sportsnet’s Luke Fox.

“Kinda on the bubble here. I know that I’m battling for my job here. So, you just gotta put that to the back of your mind and come out and do everything the right way.”

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