After scoring a combined 43 goals in two full seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs, longtime San Jose Shark Patrick Marleau is on the move again. The 39-year-old forward was dealt to the Carolina Hurricanes along with a conditional first round pick (2020) and a seventh-round pick (2020) for a 2020 sixth-round pick.
The move was essentially a salary dump. The Leafs are in desperate need of cap space to sign several players including Mitch Marner. Marleau has one year remaining on a three-year, $18.75 contract that has an annual cap hit of $6.25 million. According to Bob McKenzie, the Hurricanes will try to convince Marleau to play for them. If he opts not to, they will buy him out allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent. Marleau may also choose to retire.
Saturday morning, after the deal was completed, Marleau jumped on his wife’s Twitter — he doesn’t have social media himself — to thank fans and the Toronto organization. He also had a special message for Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner.
— Christina Marleau (@c_marleau) June 22, 2019
Thank you to the Maple Leafs Organization, the city of Toronto and to the loyal Leaf fans for welcoming my family and I to Toronto.
It was an honor to play with the iconic Maple Leaf on my jersey, and to be a part of Leaf nation. There are so many incredible experiences we had while in Toronto, things my boys will remember and cherish for their entire lives. But the very best I will take away from my time there are the people we all met. My teammates, those who work for MLSE, parents we met at our sons’ schools, hockey games and everyone in the community. Thank you for making our family feel at home.
To Auston and Mitch, a special thank you for welcoming us into the Leafs family and then becoming a part of ours. You will always have a spot at our dinner table, and extra sticks in our hockey room. I’ll miss seeing you at the rink every day. Never forget how good you guys are. Thank you again, Leafs nation. I think you all are in pretty good hands.
Matthews and Marner were frequent guests at the Marleaus’ home, having dinner, sharing Christmases, and playing hockey with the four Marleau sons Brody, Caleb, Landon, and Jagger.
Our 12 yo son had a hockey game, so he wasn’t able to attend the Leafs Christmas party. We did manage to get these two @Marner93 @stephlachanceee in the pic, but couldn’t find @AM34 🙁 We’ll redo it on Xmas day for you, Auston! pic.twitter.com/ZFhxp3j4Mx
— Christina Marleau (@c_marleau) December 19, 2018
— Christina Marleau (@c_marleau) December 19, 2017
The hockey players’ friendship was so close, Matthews even honored Marleau in San Jose during 2019 All-Star Weekend. Matthews revealed he was wearing a Marleau jersey under his own before taking part in the Honda NHL Accuracy Shooting. The Sharks crowd went wild.
Matthews took to his Instagram Saturday afternoon to thank Marleau for his friendship.
“Sad day today,” Matthews wrote. “What an honor it was to play with an unbelievable player and an even better person. Gonna miss sitting next to you in the room and seeing you every day. Thanks for welcoming me into your family and treating me like one of your own. I learned so much from you both on and off the ice and I’ll cherish your friendship and the memories we had the last two years forever. My brother for life. Love you Patty.”
View this post on Instagram
Sad day today. What an honor it was to play with an unbelievable player and an even better person. Gonna miss sitting next to you in the room and seeing you every day. Thanks for welcoming me into your family and treating me like one of your own. I learned so much from you both on and off the ice and I’ll cherish your friendship and the memories we had the last two years forever. My brother for life. Love you Patty
A post shared by Auston Matthews (@auston_matthews) on
Mitch Marner added a heart emoji on Twitter.
— Mitchell Marner (@Marner93) June 22, 2019
Marleau also received kind words from teammate Nazem Kadri and head coach Mike Babcock.
Mike Babcock on trading Patrick Marleau: "Well obviously Patty is a good man. We acquired him for a reason, to help us, and I believe he was a big part in recruiting John Tavares. This is situation where he's going to move somewhere else and pursue his career. We just thank him."
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) June 22, 2019
We’ll always have this GIF.
— Christina Marleau (@c_marleau) May 22, 2019
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