Heading into the summer of 2013, the free agent class wasn’t one that was overly impressive. Teams were busy on the first day of free agency, mainly because they wanted to scoop up whatever talent was there. Nonetheless, some players went deep into the summer without deals.
One of those players was Mason Raymond, despite having a pretty solid skill set which one would think would have intrigued multiple contenders. He went throughout the summer without a deal, eventually being offered a tryout from the Toronto Maple Leafs, earning a one-year deal.
It’s turning into the steal of the offseason.
Raymond has always been an intriguing player, mostly because of his speed, but he’s never been able to remain healthy enough to make a real impact. Hence his inability to find a team to offer him a contract this summer. Through the first couple of weeks of the regular season, he looks like an established quantity.
Through eight games with the Leafs this season, Raymond has already notched eight points. He hasn’t tallied a point in every game, in fact four of the games in which he’s actually found himself in the box score have been multi-point games. That includes a two-goal outing last week, and a three point game earlier in the month.
Raymond’s career high for points in a full season is 53, a year in which he found the back of the net 25 times. The offensive talent has always been there. Now that he’s healthy, we’re beginning to see that come out in a more consistent fashion, though it’s still early in the season.
At this point in the season, he’s making general manager Dave Nonis look like a genius. What this could lead up to is a long term deal for the veteran forward. It may not be from the Maple Leafs, but they’ll surely enjoy his success this year.