Report: New Information Has Been Provided On Toronto Maple Leafs Matt Murray

Tyler Ball
September 6, 2023  (8:49 PM)

Heading into the offseason the future was unclear for Matt Murray with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Many expected him to be bought out by the team in the first buyout window. The Maple Leafs chose a different path that confused many and was thought to be bending the rules. Now a report has come in to clear things up.

Maple Leafs Put Murray On Long-Term Injured Reserve

Earlier this offseason the Toronto Maple Leafs had a massive decision to make with Matt Murray. Many thought once Ilya Samsonov was brought back Murray would be heading for a buyout and release from the team. Instead, the Leafs put Murray on Long Term Injured Reserve (LTIR).
This move allows the team to keep both goaltenders but Murray's salary comes off the books for the upcoming season until he returns. One report from James Mirtle sheds some light on what the thought process might be.
"The Leafs aren't saying anything about Murray and where he's atHis camp isn't saying anything as well. It reminds me a bit of the (Joffrey) Lupul situation," said Mirtle. "The guy goes away, they say he's hurt and they spend the $4.6M they gained from it and well see if Murray tries to make a comeback a year from now."

This allows Toronto to use the cap space that they would have used on Murray in other places now.

Are the Maple Leafs Breaking The Rules?

Many wondered if the Maple Leafs goaltender truly had an injury or if he was doing this to help the team out and keep his spot for the future. Mirtle also touched on this subject saying that the NHL could investigate the Maple Leafs if they wanted to. He also says that at this time the league is not going to be taking action against the Leafs
"I reached out and talked to the league and said 'are you looking at this?' and they basically said teams have to file medical documentation when someone goes on LTIR and there's really only an investigation if the league thinks there's something funny there. The last I heard the league wasn't doing any kind of investigation. The thing agents and teams have said over the years is that most guys that have been in the NHL 8-10 years the way Murray has and have had as many injuries as he has, is it's not that hard to find an injury to point to and say this guy shouldn't be playing."

Mirtle brings up the idea that Matt Murray has had several injuries over his long career. Just last season Murray dealt with ankle, abductor, and concussion issues. While there is likely nothing nefarious going on with Murray being on LTIR it is interesting that the league didn't even check in on the situation.
As a result of this move, Matt Murray will likely be out for the season. He will have time to truly get fully healthy. Once he heals it will be interesting to see if Murray tries to return to the NHL. If he does it would leave the Leafs with a tough decision on what to do with him.