Facts Confirm Auston Matthews' New Contract Is A Huge Win For The Maple Leafs

Tyler Ball
August 24, 2023  (6:44 PM)

Auston Matthews and the Toronto Maple Leafs agreed to a contract extension on Wednesday. Since signing the contract the Leafs have been met with backlash. Now according to a new source, the deal is a huge win for the Maple Leafs.

Johnny Hawkey Dishes On Matthews Contract

Youtuber Johnny Hawkey posted a video today explaining his thoughts on the Auston Matthews deal. He believes that the deal is a massive win on the part of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Honestly, I'm quite impressed with the Leafs that they're able to get nine years of team control for Austin Matthews without completely breaking the bank. Now, his last contract, that's a different story. He didn't have any real hardware other than the Calder, and a lot of people were still kind of up in the air like, "Okay, can Matthews be great on his own or is this because of Marner?" Because a lot of people were saying Marner's the actual best player of the Leafs. Now he's got that 65-goal season, he's got that Hart Trophy.

Hawkey admits that Matthews' previous contract may have been a bit of an overpay based on what he produced at the time. But now Matthews has all the awards and accolades that you look for in a top-five player in the league.

Hawkey Comments On Leafs Failing To Secure Matthews Long Term

Hawkey goes on to talk about many people's concerns that Auston Matthews signed a short-term deal. He eases the concerns of many who believe that Matthews will just walk out the door much like in recent years with Matthew Tkachuk and the Calgary Flames.
And to all the people who are saying, "Why did he only give the Leafs four years? He's for sure gonna leave," or "Oh, this reminds me of when Matthew Tkachuk signed a three-year deal with the Flames." First of all, Tkachuk literally only gave three years of his services in free agency to the Flames, whereas Matthews, after this contract, he has given them nine.

He brings up the point that by the time this contract is done, Matthews will have given the Leafs nine years of contract where he could've become a free agent. While many are disappointed in the lack of commitment Hawkey reminds fans that Matthews has indeed committed to the organization just in smaller chunks.

Matthews Cap Hit Isn't As Bad As You Think

Hawkey also comments on the idea that Auston Matthews is constricting the Leafs' cap space. Hawkey basically debunks this idea by pointing out the fact that Auston Matthews takes up the same percentage of Salary Cap space that Jarome Iginla did when he signed with the Calgary Flames.
Look, I get it, you see $13.25 million, he becomes the highest-paid player in the NHL. I get it, it jumps at you. But people forget that the salary cap is going to go up, and these numbers mean different things as the years go on. I love this tweet from Andy and Ron who say Jerome Iginla's contract was more "expensive" for Calgary than Matthews' deal will be for Toronto. Iginla cost almost 18 percent of the salary cap, whereas Matthews will cost around 15 to 16 percent.

When seeing the number 15% percent of the cap it makes the deal feel less limiting. This still gives the Leafs plenty of space to go out and make improvements to the roster.

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Facts Confirm Auston Matthews' New Contract Is A Huge Win For The Maple Leafs

Will Auston Matthews win another Hart Trophy with the Toronto Maple Leafs

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