This seems like rather bad news for the Toronto Maple Leafs, regardless of how things end up working out.
As fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs will already know, the hottest button issue surrounding their beloved team has been the ongoing contract negotiations with star forward Mitch Marner. For fans of the Maple Leafs the situation has played out a lot like the one that occurred just a short time ago when the Maple Leafs dragged out their contract negotiations with restricted free agent William Nylander.
This situation however may play out considerably worse than the Nylander deal as Marner is talented enough of a player that the threat of an offer sheet seems like a very realistic one. Of course the plan for the Toronto Maple Leafs has always been to sign Marner prior to him hitting restricted free agency on July 1st, but it now sounds like that may no longer be in Toronto's control.
According to a stunning report from TSN National Hockey League insider Pierre LeBrun it not appears that Marner and his camp will speak to rival organizations when the window to do so opens up for restricted free agents this upcoming Wednesday. That means that Marner has the full intention of gauging his value around the league, and although that may not be a popular move among the Maple Leafs' fan base it is of course a shrewd negotiating ploy by Marner and his representation. That does not mean that Marner is prepared to sign an offer sheet, in fact he may have no intention of taking any offers from any rival teams, but by gauging what he is worth it would allow him to bring yet another chip to the negotiating table with the Maple Leafs.
That being said though it is not outside the realm of possibility that Marner receives an offer that blows him away, and by extension blows away anything the Maple Leafs have offered so far, and in that scenario he could very well sign an offer sheet. At the very least it would be interesting to see what the Leafs would choose to go with in that scenario, the massive compensation they would receive for letting Marner walk or simply matching the offer Marner has received. Either way it sounds like the price on Marner is about to go way up.