Lightning make creative salary dump to Leafs

Bet you didn't expect Olaf Kolzig, Jamie Heward, Andy Rogers and a fourth-round pick to be dealt this deadline day.

That's exactly the bizarre haul the Maple Leafs are taking on in exchange for AHL defenceman Richard Petiot, who they're sending to Tampa Bay basically with a bunch of cash. Kolzig and Heward are very unlikely to play this season due to injuries, and the Lightning's ownership is trying to limit its costs in what is already a lost season.

It remains to be seen if the NHL approves this deal. I wouldn't be surprised if they shoot it down, as its intent is exclusively to pass dollars around. Then again, the Devils traded a retired player in Vladimir Malakhov a few years ago.

Kolzig makes $2.5-million this season, while Heward is at just $475,000. With only 40 days remaining, this deal means the Leafs would eat about $625,000.

And, believe it or not, Brian Burke had a question during his press conference asking how Kolzig acquisition changed the team's goaltending plans.

UPDATE What may also come into play here is revenue sharing figures, and getting below the salary midpoint of $48.7-million will allow the Lightning to be eligible to receive those dollars. Prior to the deadline, Tampa Bay was on pace to spend $51-million this season but they've potentially unloaded close to $6-million (or more should they get rid of Gary Roberts) in full-year salaries and could get some handout relief as a result.

That's if this deal goes through. It makes me wonder if we'll see more of this kind of maneovering between small and big market clubs in the future.

UPDATE This deal is actually going to cost Toronto closer to $430,000. My earlier estimate included the bonuses in Kolzig's contract, which complicate things slightly.

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