3:28: The Maple Leafs provided details to Moore’s extension, which will pay him $750K in 2019-20 and $800K in the 2020-21 season.
10:18: Trevor Moore apparently impressed the Toronto Maple Leafs front office with his NHL debut enough to stick around. The team has signed Moore to a two-year, one-way contract extension that will carry an average annual value of $775K. Moore was scheduled to become a restricted free agent at the end of the season, and would have been eligible for arbitration.
Now the 23-year old forward has some stability moving forward and must be encouraged by the idea that he could be a full-time player for the Maple Leafs as early as next season. Deals like this are imperative for the Maple Leafs as they continue to traverse the difficult salary cap issues that will arise as they get their star players under contract. In his short NHL stint Moore has shown enough to prove he can be a reliable fourth-line contributor at worst, and now will be a reasonably priced one. Head coach Mike Babcock recently spoke to reporters including Luke Fox of Sportsnet about that obvious NHL floor, but also believes that there might be more to Moore’s game:
He’s going to be an NHLer, for sure. It’s just how soon do you want him to play eight minutes? That’s the beauty of not getting kids here too soon is, you want them to score. The more he scores [in the minor leagues], the more likely he’s going to score at the NHL level.
If we can get healthy, he can go down, score a lot and become a scorer rather than a checker.
Healthy is exactly what the Maple Leafs did after Moore’s six-game taste in the NHL, as Zach Hyman returned to the lineup recently and pushed the young forward back to the AHL. In 30 games for the Toronto Marlies, Moore has 26 points and was named to the All-Star game. That kind of production will be difficult to duplicate in the NHL especially given the tough forward competition, but this deal will at least give him the chance to do just that.
The Maple Leafs still have plenty of work to do before next season if they want to get all of their restricted free agents signed, a group that includes Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, Kasperi Kapanen, Andreas Johnsson, Garret Sparks and Igor Ozhiganov just on the NHL roster.