The Toronto Maple Leafs announced via their website today that they’ve signed 2016’s first overall draft pick, Auston Matthews.
Matthews, who will be 19 when the season starts, played last year with Zurich of the Swiss league, finishing fourth in goals, with 24, and tenth in points with 46, playing just 36 games in a 50 game schedule. He was selected first overall by the Leafs, and has been involved in an apparently mild contract dispute over performance bonuses that Leafs’ GM Lou Lamoriello has a philosophical opposition to.
The deal will be three years long, as are all entry level deals, and according to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston, will include the max salary and all performance bonuses. General Fanager reports that this means Matthews will carry a base cap-hit of $925k per season, but with bonuses that can add up to as high as $3.775MM. Should the Maple Leafs spend above the cap due to rookie bonuses, they will be penalized by that amount the following year. The Globe and Mail’s James Mirtle quotes Matthews’ agent Pat Brisson confirming that Matthews will receive the full amount.