John Tavares's future with Toronto Maple Leafs in question?

What does the future hold for Tavares?



It was one of the biggest free agent signings in Toronto Maple Leafs history in the summer of 2018, when new general manager Kyle Dubas was able to lure Ontario native and former New York Islanders captain John Tavares back home with a hefty seven year, $77 million pact. 

And while there were more than a few detractors of the deal considering the fact that Toronto already had ample depth at the center position, Tavares has worked out well for the Leafs in terms of regular season play. In three of his five years with the Leafs so far, he's eclipsed the 75 point mark. And this season, he played a key role in helping the Leafs advance past Round 1 of the postseason for the first time sine 2004 by scoring the OT series-winning goal against the Lightning late last month.

But with new GM Brad Treliving now running the show, there are those who believe that Tavares and his hefty cap hit of $11 million could be a candidate to try and move in order to free up some much-needed salary cap space. Or, Tavares could try and negotiate a new deal that would take effect when his current one ends in two years. 

So, what kind of deal could he expect to land? As one particular author from The Hockey Writers believes, just look at Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar's recent two-year extension. 

"Kopitar wasn’t going to leave Los Angeles. Tavares won’t leave Toronto. Unless either player is forced out or one team walks away, you won’t convince them to play in other cities or for other organizations because their hearts are with their respective teams. That said, in Los Angeles, the Kings felt the need to reward Kopitar for consistent production and for being loyal. Are the Maple Leafs going to do the same?"

"When the time comes to talk extension with Tavares, the Leafs might have two options. Based on the comparables as the salary cap increases, Tavares will be well within his rights to ask for $7 million per season if his numbers don’t fall off a cliff. Should the Maple Leafs go there? Keeping Matthews, Mitch Marner, William Nylander, and others is going to be a tall task, even with a higher cap. Where is the room for Tavares’ $7 million?"

Folks, what does the future hold for John Tavares in Toronto?