Maple Leafs have something special planned for Ilya Samsonov.
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Maple Leafs have something special planned for Ilya Samsonov.

The Toronto Maple Leafs have placed Ilya Samsonov on waivers, but that is only just the beginning.

Jonathan Larivee

The Toronto Maple Leafs finally caved on Sunday and made the difficult decision to put goaltender Ilya Samsonov on waivers after a series of very poor performances from the Russian netminder.

Normally in these circumstances one of two things will happen:

The first scenario will see a player claimed off of waivers by a rival team, something that is extremely unlikely in this case given Samsonov's poor performance and relatively expensive salary cap hit.

The second scenario occurs when a player is not claimed by any team, that player is usually sent down to the American Hockey League to play for the National Hockey League's affiliate team until they find their game again, in this case the Toronto Marlies.

Interestingly enough though there are already indications that this will not be the case for Ilya Samsonov, likely due to just how badly his confidence has been shaken as a result of his poor season.

On Sunday, NHL insider Elliotte Friedman reported that, although Samsonov will join the Marlies should he clear waivers, Samsonov is not expect to play for the Marlies at any point this week. Instead, the team intends to work with Samsonov both on and off the ice in an effort to help him regain his confidence before throwing him into more games.

You have to wonder if seeing how the Jack Campbell situation has unfolded for the Edmonton Oilers this season hasn't resulted in the Maple Leafs taking this more cautious approach. The Leafs likely don't want to find themselves in a similar scenario.