Mitch Marner’s projected next contract has Leafs’ fans frustrated

Is this what the future has in store for Marner?

Michael W.

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mitch Marner is due for a new contract after the upcoming season, and many believe his time with the franchise should come to an end. While he consistently puts up good numbers in the regular season, his performance in the playoffs has been lacking.

Additionally, his tongue-in-cheek comparison of himself and his Leafs teammates to "gods" did not sit well with fans and critics alike. And with only a year remaining on his already-hefty current contract, the prevailing thought is that the team could elect to move on from him and utilize the dollars that make up his $11 million salary to address other needs. 

But what exactly could his next contract look like, whether it be in Toronto or elsewhere? 

Former Maple Leafs defenseman and current analyst Carlo Colaiacovo opined on TSN's 'First Up' that not only will Marner surpass his current salary, but could even land more than Florida Panthers forward Sam Reinhart, who is currently playing in the Stanley Cup Final after having tallied 57 goals in the regular season. 

"What if the people that love Mitch Marner, love Marner as a player at the salary he is making right now or less than that and not at the salary he is likely going to command in free agency which is somewhere between $11.5 and $13.25 because that's the Toronto salary that he's put himself in," Colaiacovo said. 

"Could you see a scenario where a team trades for Marner and gives him an 8x$13M deal a year. Sam Reinhart's not even going to get that this season."

Needless to say, that's an incredible price tag for a player who has yet to accomplish anything of note beyond the regular season. If the Leafs were to hand out that hefty deal to Marner, it would almost certainly spell the end of the tenure of captain John Tavares, who also has one year remaining on his current deal and an AAV of $11 million.

There's only so much salary to go around, and this could very well price Marner outside of Toronto, or force the jettison of another "Core 4" forward in Tavares if he sticks around. 

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Source: First Up