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Still No Contract For Auston Matthews

from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,

Toronto Maple Leafs top draft pick Auston Matthews remained without a contract on Wednesday, the sticking point apparently over performance bonuses that GM Lou Lamoriello has historically avoided in his time as an NHL executive.

There is no reason to panic yet, with hockey still two months away.

But some find it a curious way to do to business for a team that has invested heavily in building through youth, and spent so much time selling the pain of losing to land a player of Matthews calibre.

“This one, to me, feels foolish,” an NHL source not involved in the talks told The Star. “I don’t know what Lou’s reward is if he wins for the amount of risk you take by going this direction.”

The Leafs not only risk alienating Matthews and his camp — souring future talks when Matthews will have more leverage — but they may be sending a negative message to players around the league about how the team treats stars, he said.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: auston+matthews


SYF's avatar

Isn’t there an entry-level contract for draftees?  Or is that only for those who were drafted in the second through seventh round?

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 07/20/16 at 08:08 PM ET


There is, but that also includes bonuses in addition to salary that Lou apparently doesn’t want to offer.

Posted by RyanVM on 07/20/16 at 09:23 PM ET

Royal Grand Exalted PooBah's avatar

So… “Contracts are hard”?

Sorry couldn’t resist.

Posted by Royal Grand Exalted PooBah from the basement of the Alamo on 07/20/16 at 10:55 PM ET

Chet's avatar

love it. tell them to F off and get moved to detroit. so short sighted.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 07/21/16 at 03:18 AM ET

Primis's avatar

You think football fans would tolerate this shit? 

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/20/16 at 11:23 PM ET

Have you actually thought about who the owners are in the NFL, and what they are like?  Jerry Jones? Dan Snyder?  Robert Kraft?  In many cases the owners are the ones calling the shots over the GM’s, and their Old Boys mentality makes someone like Lou in Toronto *pale* in comparison.

TL;DR:  Yes, yes NFL fans do tolerate, and in fact celebrate, it.

Let Lou be Lou, he’s Lou-ing himself out of the NHL here eventually.  I couldn’t believe it when TOR brought him in, in the first place.  All you need to do is look at where New Jersey is now to see how he lost it.

Posted by Primis on 07/21/16 at 09:51 AM ET


Much ado about nothing. It’ll get resolved in time. If Lou were to blow this one, he’ll have literally thousands of fans at his house calling for his head.

Posted by evileye on 07/21/16 at 09:53 AM ET


Yeah, seems basically impossible that a deal won’t happen. But for fun hypotheticals, I guess Matthews’ option would basically be to return to Zurich or something if he refused to sign with Toronto? Or demand a trade? I mean, Toronto still has his rights for the next 3 years.

Posted by RyanVM on 07/21/16 at 10:00 AM ET


It will get done.  Lou is just all about “the crest”, not the player.  Problem is, in 2016, nobody cares about the crest except Lou.  Players can just go down the street and get the deal they want from the next club.  Its not 1980 anymore.  Its not like playing in Nashville, or Arizona is worse than playing in Toronto.  In a lot of ways its probably better.  If Matthews sat out for 3 years and signed with the coyotes, he’d still be better than any player the Leafs have on their roster.  Lou is just too old school to really be successful at this point.  The leafs need a star more than any star needs the leafs and that’s pretty much a guarantee for any player in the NHL.

Posted by PMP5030 on 07/21/16 at 10:44 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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