THE DEFENSIVE LIABILITY
John Tavares was the big acquisition for the Leafs signing for 7 years for $77 Million ($11 Million Per) which takes a large chunk of change out of the $80 Mil salary cap. Word on the street is Matthews is looking for Connor McDavid money and Willy will most likely sign for 6-8 Million per year and this could devastate them in the future. Toronto already has $9.5 locked up in the back end with Rielly and Zaitsev which leaves 4 other spots that will need to be filled in the future. I guess my question is – What is Matthews actually worth?
Matthews is very much a super star in the NHL with great hands, hockey sense and a cannon of a shot but is he really worth Connor Mcdavid money? I say…. Hard no. Let's take a quick comparison looking over the first 2 years of their NHL careers.
Games Played- 144 Goals- 74 Assists- 58 Points – 132
Games Played- 127 Goals- 46 Assist- 102 Points- 148
Comparably McJesus has obviously dominated the sheet playing less games and arguably on a worst team. Auston Matthews in my eyes is a $10-11 million range. Leafs should sign a bridge deal for 3 for $25 Million until he can prove him self worthy of the big bucks. With 3 forwards taking up $30 Million and $9Million this gives the leafs very little room to round out their team with already big question marks on the back end. Next year Toronto will have 11 RFA/UFA's they will need to make big decisions for which could blow up this Leafs team as we know it. We will see how the next few weeks turnout with Willy and see what happens with Matthews…. Let's just hope he doesn't wake up one day and want to play for his childhood team the Arizona Coyotes!
Let me know your thoughts!