Plans revealed for Ilya Samsonov, if he clears waivers
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The plan for Ilya Samsonov revealed, if he clears waivers

Published January 1, 2024 at 11:13
BY RYAN SMITHERAM

The Toronto Maple Leafs shocked the NHL, to an extent, by placing goaltender Ilya Samsonov on waivers on Sunday. Should he clear, Samsonov will join the Toronto Marlies tomorrow. Samsonov has struggled mightily this season, posting a 3.94 GAA and .862 save percentage across 15 games. Following Friday's loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets, Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe ripped into Samsonov and issued a sudble plea to GM Brad Treliving to get him another goalie.

With Samsonov on waivers, the Leafs have recalled first-year Marlie and 2022 fourth-round pick Dennis Hildeby to back up the veteran Martin Jones. The 6'6 Swede is off to a phenomenal start in his first pro season in North America, posting a 7-5-3 record with a 2.20 GAA and .919 save percentage.

While Hildeby will get some NHL experience, according to NHL Network's Kevin Weekes, Samsonov will not see any AHL action at the start of his assignment. Weekes revealed that the plan for Samsonov and the Leafs is to use all of the available resources within the organization, including working with a development coach, mental skills coach and a video coach to get right, both mentally and physically. The goal is to provide him with a comprehensive reset and get him back to feeling like himself. That is, of course, if he and his $3.55M salary clear waivers at 2pm on Monday.

If Samsonov does get claimed, it will challenge the depth of the Leafs, but it will also give them some significant salary cap relief that they can put to use. Given his poor play and high salary, it is unlikely Samsonov will be claimed and the hope for the Leafs is that this approach gets Samsonov to rediscover the form he showed last season.



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January 1   |   832 answers
The plan for Ilya Samsonov revealed, if he clears waivers

Do you think Samsonov will rediscover last season's form with this plan?

Yes19223.1 %
No64076.9 %
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