Maple Leafs Star Could Have A Monster Season In Contract Year

Marner seasonAt this juncture, it appears unlikely that Mitch Marner will be traded before the upcoming season, meaning he will likely fulfill the final year of his contract with the Leafs. Despite persistent trade rumors surrounding Marner, the likelihood of such a move seems to diminish over time. Potential trade assets previously considered for Marner, like Juuse Saros, have taken different paths, such as signing long-term extensions with their current teams, like Saros did with the Nashville Predators.

Fans should now prepare for Marner to remain a Leaf next season. Should this be the case, expectations are high for the 27-year-old to significantly boost his offensive output.

When star players enter the last year of their contracts, they often perform at peak levels, aiming to showcase their abilities. William Nylander, Marner’s teammate, is a recent example: amidst trade rumors before the 2023-24 season, he achieved a career-high 98 points, solidifying his role with the team and securing a lucrative eight-year, $92M contract mid-season. Similarly, Stanley Cup winner Sam Reinhart saw a career best in his final contract year, scoring 57 goals and 94 points, leading to an eight-year deal with an average annual value of $8.6M.

Given these examples and past occurrences, it’s reasonable to expect Marner, with his talent level, to aim for a similar breakthrough this season. His best season to date was in 2022-23, when he amassed 99 points.

Even if general manager Brad Treliving wants to re-sign Marner like he did with Nylander, it would be unrealistic. If Marner were to get a new contract with the Maple Leafs, it would have to be similar to the $11.5M deal that Nylander got. A number that rich may be over the budget for the Leafs. There are loopholes through it, John Tavares would have to take significantly less than his current contract, if he were to re-sign that is. But at any rate, there’s a lot of uncertainty with where Marner will play next season. However, we can expect a probable outburst in Marner’s offensive numbers in the next campaign.



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