The Toronto Maple Leafs signed Mitch Marner to a 6-year $10.893 million contract, with the forward graciously leaving $107k on the table for a hometown discount. We all thought the bullshit would end with his signature but notable asshole Darren Farris continues to talk offer sheets.
The claim from Marner’s agent Ferris on TSN radio is that two offer sheets were on the table for Mitch. But, because Marner was fully motivated to stay a Maple Leaf, he declined both of them by not signing. This… this doesn’t make sense.
Kyle Dubas had cast doubt on the Marner offer sheet situation earlier this summer, basically warning teams that if they try to mess up the Leafs cap with a ridiculous offer they may just have to pay the compensation. However, unlike paid SportsNet analyst and resident “old-man yelling-at-clouds” Brian Burke, Dubas understands the cap and knew he could fit Marner in, regardless of the offers.
So, why not force Toronto’s hand and sign an offer sheet if you’re Mitch Marner, you know because you want to be a Maple Leaf? You get a quick resolution to the contract dispute and don’t have to sour the fanbase while threatening to miss games or training camp. It’s a win-win, right?
In reality, the offer sheets weren’t considered by Marner because they were almost certainly long-term deals, similar to what he eventually signed in Toronto, and it makes sense. What team is going to give up either four first-round picks (if the contract was over $10.5m) or two first-round picks, a second-round pick, and a third-round pick (contract value between $8.5 – $10.5m) for a three-year bridge deal?
We all know Marner wanted a short term deal, end-loaded to maximize his qualifying offer before hitting free agency. It’s exactly the reason why teams didn’t offer a deal like that to him – because any team that could afford to do it aren’t three to four years away from contending with Mitch Marner, especially without draft capital.
As far as I can tell, Ferris is going to the media and selling the story of declined offer sheets to try and win back the favor of Leafs Nation. It’s a shallow attempt; Leaf fans would rather hear that Marner wanted to maximize his value as a generational player over being spoon-fed shit like this fairy tale Ferris has crapped out.
Can we all just move on from this now and win a handful of Stanley Cups before the next contract situation pops up? Marner got a great deal by flirting with derailing the Leaf’s season, resulting in a good bit of personal business. Hopefully, the contract talk resides for a bit, now.
I’m already tired of hearing how much Morgan Rielly is going to make or is Woll/Scott are ready to replace Freddy Andersen as cheap cap options in a few years time.