NHL Rumors: Toronto Maple Leafs – Kasperi Kapanen and Jake Muzzin
Toronto Maple Leafs and Jake Muzzin have held preliminary contract extension talks.
© Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
Kapanen scratched Saturday night

Sportsnet: The Toronto Maple Leafs scratched forward Kasperi Kapanen from last night’s game against the Ottawa Senators.

“We had chatted about it yesterday a little bit then made our decision (on Saturday),” said Keefe. “I wanted to sleep on it and we met with (Kapanen) this morning, made a decision and went from there.”

Kapanen has had his name in the rumor mill with the Maple Leafs looking for defensive help. Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said it was a one-time incident and that Kapanen would address it on Monday after their practice.

Maple Leafs and Jake Muzzin have held preliminary talks … It won’t be an easy deal to get done

Sportsnet: The Toronto Maple Leafs and defenseman Jake Muzzin are having “preliminary discussions” about a contract extension.

“The sense I’m getting from the early going here is this is gonna be a difficult one,” Johnston said. “You have, in Jake Muzzin, a player the Leafs very much like — they enjoy and appreciate what he brings off-ice as well as on-ice. But they also have some pretty significant cap constraints.”

The 30-year old Muzzin is in the last year of his deal with a $4 million cap hit. The Leafs will have cap concerns again next season. They also have pending UFA defensemen in Tyson Barrie and Cody Ceci, and pending RFA defenseman Travis Dermott.

Muzzin is from Woodstock, Ontario has said that being close to home is nice. He added that he’d love to remain with the Leafs.

“From his side of things, he loves playing in Toronto, it’d been a nice fit for him,” Johnston said. “But he has to weigh that against the potential of what he could get in the open market. We’ll see what develops from here, but they are at least exploring to see if there’s a fit there beyond this season.”