Monday looks to be the day for the Maple Leafs to re-sign William Nylander

Photo credit:Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Jon Steitzer
6 months ago
Elliotte Friedman started off his Saturday night Headlines segment with some Leafs news we’ve all been waiting on. While the Nylander news has been out there for the past few days we now have a bit more clarity on the timeline for the deal and the dollar amount.
Friedman reported that it is likely just a matter of the Maple Leafs returning from San Jose tomorrow and when Nylander heads into the rink on Monday the paper work will get signed and the Leafs will have another eight years of William Nylander. The cap hit? It appears to be $11.5M per season, which you’ll note is a significantly higher than the $9.5M AAV that pundits thought was excessive over the summer.
There increase in Nylander’s cap hit is two-fold. The reality of the salary cap going up by $4M min this season and likely to continue going up in future seasons means that star players are going to be asking for a lot more. Couple that with William Nylander being on track for his second 40 goal season and a legitimate shot at hitting 100 points this year warrants a bit more money. Still you can’t help but think this was horribly played by the Maple Leafs front office.
What we don’t know at this point are the details and those details will be significant. It’s highly likely that any deal will come with a full no movement clause and that is pretty much standard for the upper echelon of NHL talent at this point, but more important than that is what percentage of the deal will be paid through signing bonuses, is the deal front or backloaded, and even though Leafs fans will be excited to bring Nylander back and for a long time, knowing how buyout proof this deal is will be important.
The current Nylander contract is heavily weighted towards signing bonus payments, but not to the extent that it is entirely paid that way like what Auston Matthews receives from the Leafs.
While the dollars and cents will most certainly be a topic once things are finalized and the future of the Leafs cap situation will need to be explored once more, the main thing is that the Leafs have locked up one of their stars for a good long time. Having both Matthews and Nylander committed to the Leafs takes some of the pressure off negotiations with Tavares and Marner, and the Nylander contract potentially sets the bar for Marner.

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