Maple Leafs Incur Heavy Risk with $27M Contract for Chris Tanev

Key Takeaways:

– The Toronto Maple Leafs secure former Dallas Stars defenseman Chris Tanev with a deal that makes it the sixth largest in the offseason.
– The signing was labeled as ‘risky’ due to Tanev’s injury track record and age, as he is already 34 years old.
– Maple Leaf’s General Manager, Brad Treliving, expresses excitement over the signing, praising Tanev as an elite defensive player.
– Critics argue that the contract, which runs until Tanev turns 40, is above market value and could end up being a financial disaster for the team.
– Tanev has undeniable production values, scoring 190 points in his 792 regular-season appearances so far.

Toronto Maple Leafs’ Big Bet

The NHL offseason stirred up a big sensation as the Toronto Maple Leafs scooped up former Dallas Stars defenseman, Chris Tanev, signing a six-year contract worth a whopping $27 million. This move was substantial enough to rank it as the sixth-largest contract of the offseason.

Dishing Out the Dollars

Toronto Star insider, Nick Kypreos, details how the Maple Leafs outshone other franchises vying for Tanev, offering a longer contract term and outbidding the Stars by an eye-catching $12 million. In this high-stakes game, the Leafs pushed their chips all in.

Behind the Big Signing

Despite failing to acquire him at the trade deadline multiple times, Leafs’ General Manager (GM) Brad Treliving finally managed to snag Tanev with a stunning six-year, $27-million contract. Treliving heaps praise on Tanev, calling him an “elite defensive player” and a “culture carrier”, despite acknowledging his age.

Risky Yet Strategic Move

While the signing is a win for the Maple Leafs in the short-term, some critics have labeled this as a ‘risky’ deal given Tanev’s age and history of injuries. NHL insider Chris Johnston asserts that the contract is both lengthy and risky. It’s a gamble, as the team is hoping that Tanev remains healthy despite his injury-prone past and advancing age.

The Dollar Breakdown

Examining the contract breakdown reveals that the Leafs haven’t matched the annual average value (AAV) offered by the Dallas Stars, which was $5 million over three years. The Leafs’ offer averages to an annual salary of $4.5 million per year. Despite this, the combined total deal value was too good for Tanev to resist.

Red Flags Over Terms

Despite Tanev’s impressive track record, with 190 points accumulated in his 792 regular-season appearances since he started in 2010-11, the terms of his contract have raised concerns. The contract will run until Tanev is 40, which some see as a considerable risk given his age and the long-term commitment required.

A Roller Coaster Ride Ahead?

Tanev’s signing has been dubbed by some as the most exciting addition to the Maple Leafs lineup. But the six-year commitment rings alarm bells for critics such as Dom Luszczyszyn of The Athletic, who insists that the contract is a potential “disaster in waiting”.

Market Value Versus Actual Worth

Even Scott Maxwell of Daily Faceoff categorized Tanev’s contract as one of the “worst contracts” signed in 2024. His concern is that it’s above market value and may end up costing the Maple Leafs more than it’s worth in the long run.

In conclusion, the Toronto Maple Leafs’ decision to sign Chris Tanev to a lucrative six-year contract is a bold move that has caused quite a stir in the NHL world. It’s a gamble where only time will declare the winners and losers. As Tanev takes to the ice, both fans and critics will be watching closely to see if this risk pays off.


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