NHL

Maple Leafs buy out Tucker's contract

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Darren Dreger
6/25/2008 10:02:16 AM
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Darcy Tucker's career with the Toronto Maple Leafs is over, as interim general manager Cliff Fletcher bought out the veteran forward on Wednesday.

 

"The decision is always difficult when you are dealing with a good person. We wish him well," Fletcher told TSN.

"It's a business, Darcy knows that," Tucker's agent Carlos Sosa told TSN.

"Whether this decision by the Maple Leafs is good business or bad business.only time will tell."

"We've been prepared for everything and Darcy and his family are ready to move on," Sosa added.

Tucker has three years remaining on his contract and Toronto will be on the hook for two-thirds, or $6 million paid over a six year term. Tucker signed a four-year contract extension with the club back in February of 2007.

Because Tucker's contract included a no-movement clause, Tucker had the option of either going on waivers or not. He chose not to and thus becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Tucker's path out of Toronto appears have been laid several weeks ago when the Maple Leafs introduced new head coach Ron Wilson.

"Darcy Tucker for years was one of my favourite players," Wilson said at the time. "Then he started to wear down. What his role on this team will be, I'm not really sure."

The 33-year old forward struggled mightily this season, finishing with just 18 goals and 16 assists in 74 games - down from 24 goals and 19 assists in just 56 games a year ago.

The Maple Leafs acquired Tucker back in 2000 for a package that included Mike Johnson. In eight seasons with Toronto, Tucker has scored 148 goals and 319 assists.

A sixth-round draft selection of Montreal in 1993, Tucker has 197 goals and 239 assists in parts of 13 seasons with the Canadiens, Tampa Bay Lightning and Maple Leafs.

Darcy Tucker (Photo: Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)

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(Photo: Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)
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