There were times I didn’t think it was going to get done in time for training camp, but Nazem Kadri has re-signed with the Maple Leafs.
With camp opening today, Kadri and Toronto GM Dave Nonis ended weeks of contentious contract talks by agreeing to a 2-year deal worth 5.8-million dollars.
He then tweeted “Happy to be with the leafs for the next couple years, looking forward to camp #leafnation #bestnation.”
The 22-year-old restricted free agent centre scored 18 goals and added 26 assists in 48 games during his first full NHL season last year.
With not a whole lot of money to play with, and restricted free agent defenceman Cody Franson waiting to get his new contract, Kadri agreed to the so-called bridge deal.
It’s similar to the contract P.K. Subban signed with Montreal last season.
Nonis is about 2-million dollars under the salary cap and that may force the 26-year-old Franson to sign just a 1-year deal after enjoying a career year with 4 goals and 25 assists.
Getting Kadri to sign on the dotted line was important, I think especially for his development as a player.
Any sort of holdout would have impacted his standing within the hierarchy of the Leafs young core.