Leafs finally place former Canucks defenceman Frank Corrado on waivers

Feb 4 2017, 7:18 pm

Well it’s about time.

Former Canucks draft pick Frank Corrado was placed on waivers on Saturday, meaning any team in the National Hockey League will have a chance to acquire him for free.

The move comes after Toronto picked up defenceman Alexey Marchenko off waivers from the Detroit Red Wings.

For Marchenko’s sake, I hope he gets more opportunity to play than Corrado has.

Corrado was acquired nearly 16 months ago by the Leafs after the Canucks tried to send the waiver-eligible player to their farm team in Utica. Canucks fans have spent most of those 16 months debating if management let a future top-four defenceman go.

Since then, Corrado has appeared in just 41 of Toronto’s 131 games. He hasn’t been injured, and the Leafs aren’t a Stanley Cup contender.

Corrado has been in limbo for one and a half seasons. Too good to risk losing on waivers, not good enough to put in the lineup.

Corrado turns 24 next month, and after Leafs management essentially wasted two prime development years, there’s a decent chance that nobody claims him.

If that happens, he’ll head to the AHL and at least get regular game action with the Toronto Marlies.

Will the Canucks snag him? It’s not out of the question, but given Vancouver’s depth on defence, I wouldn’t hold your breath.

Still, you can make the argument that Corrado would be an upgrade on Alex Biega or Philip Larsen. Unfortunately you can’t make that argument based on his play this season, because he’s only played twice.

In 39 games last season, Corrado had six points (1-5-6). His underlying numbers were quite good, putting up the best Corsi-For percentage (54.8%) among Leafs defenceman that played at least 20 games.

I’m not under any illusions that Corrado is destined for superstardom, and having a coach like Mike Babcock not have trust you isn’t a good sign, but in many ways he hasn’t been given a chance. Hopefully for his sake, somebody will.

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