While the team did not discuss the financial aspect of Kessel’s contract, TSN is reporting that the contract is believed to include a limited no-trade clause and be worth approximately $8 million per season.
If you think about it, Kessel really is worth every penny. In the last 3 seasons with the Maple Leafs Kessel has amassed 89 goals and 109 assists for a total of 198 points in the course of 212 games. That is just 33 points shy of Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos.
The NHL is reporting that Kessel had no intentions of negotiating the terms of his contract during the season, so talks did not kick into high gear until last week when Kessel expressed his desire to remain in Toronto long-term.
“I’ve always wanted to be here,” Kessel said at a Bell Centre press conference. “It’s a place I wanted to play; I want to finish my career here. It’s a great city, the organization’s unbelievable.” ~ NHL.com
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, the Maple Leafs will now be shifting their priority to extending the contract of captain Dion Phaneuf.
Kessel extension should be completed this morning. Talks intensified this wknd. Phaneuf negotiations will soon become priority.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) October 1, 2013