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Johnsson, now a Devil, figured salary-cap issues would force Leafs to trade him

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Hockey players often will say they’re surprised, if not shocked, to learn they have been traded.

Not Andreas Johnsson.

Dealt by the Maple Leafs to the New Jersey Devils for forward Joey Anderson on Saturday, Johnsson had an idea he would be on the move.

“Because of the salary cap,” Johnsson said during a conference call on Monday with media. “I knew (there) was a good chance to be traded, so I was kind of prepared that I probably would not come back to Toronto. I’ve never been traded before so I got a little bit nervous.”

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When Johnsson signed a four-year, $13.6-million US contact (with a cap hit of $3.4-million) with the Leafs in June 2019, he didn’t envision not fulfilling it with Toronto. The Leafs’ cap problems, exacerbated by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, forced the hand of general manager Kyle Dubas.

“I thought I was going to be in Toronto a longer time,” Johnsson said. “But it’s hockey and it’s the business and it’s the way it can be.”

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