Auston Matthews has signed a multi-year contract extension with the Maple Leafs, the team announced early this afternoon.
The 21-year-old star centre’s new deal will keep him in Toronto for the next five seasons and hold an average annual value of $11.634 million, a team release said.
Matthews and GM Kyle Dubas will hold a press conference at 4 p.m.
The total value of the contract over its five-year life is a little more than $58 million (all terms US). Matthews will see just under $55 million of the total value of his contract paid out in bonuses, a similar blueprint to the way the Leafs structured John Tavares’ contract.
In fact, the Leafs have built several of their recent contracts with bonus structures. Tavares, for example, will be paid $14.9 million in bonus money on July 1. Other Leafs receiving bonus payments on that date include William Nylander ($8.3 million), Frederik Andersen ($3 million), Patrick Marleau ($3 million), Nikita Zaitsev ($3 million) and Nazem Kadri ($2 million).
The Leafs agreed to the deal with the current NHL cap at $79.5 million. Projections for next season are as high at $83 million, with increases expected in future years.
Matthews has 23 goals and 23 assists for 46 points in 38 games for Toronto this season, some of which he was sidelined by a shoulder injury. He skated in 62 regular-season games for the Maple Leafs in 2017-18 and registered 63 points (34 goals, 29 assists) while adding a goal and an assist in seven Stanley Cup playoff games.
Leafs coach Mike Babcock, speaking before the official announcement by the team, felt having Matthews wrapped up on an extension was promising news.
“It would be significant for the franchise,” Babcock said. “Those guys are all gonna be signed (Matthews and Mitch Marner). They’re smart guys and they want to be here for a long time and they want to win for a long time.
“In order to do that, it’s pretty simple, you have to do the math … we have to work with them and that’s what (Dubas) and his group are doing with their people, so that its best for (the players) and best for us.”
Marner is also slated to become a restricted free agent this summer but has been wanting to hold off on any contract talks until the end of the season.
More to come …