Maple Leafs sign Sandin to two-year extension

The stalemate is finally over.

As training camp winds down and injuries continue to pile up for the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club and their unsigned young defenseman decided to bury the hatchet on Thursday morning, agreeing to terms. a two-year contract extension with an average annual value of $1.4 million.

The deal, which ties Sandin to Toronto for at least the 2023-24 season, buys a restricted free agent season and a refereeing season, while also carrying $1.6 million in second-year salary for s to ensure that Sandin’s qualifying offer is superior to his AAV.

And now the Maple Leafs are set.

Sandin’s toughness was the only missing piece for the club entering this season, with the Leafs reportedly offering Sandin an identical two-year, $1.4 million AAV deal with lone defenseman Timothy Liljegren signed in June. Of course, Sandin dismissed that pitch at the time, believing he could hold out for a slightly higher salary given his pedigree and importance to the organization. But after watching Jordie Benn and Carl Dahlstrom suffer potentially long-term injuries in last night’s preseason against the Montreal Canadiens, Sandin and his side opted to take the opportunity instead.

The decision is a good one for both parties.

With Liljegren on the shelf for now after hernia surgery and Jake Muzzin struggling with back pain, there’s now room on the Maple Leafs blue line for Sandin to land a role and run with it, potentially forcing coach Sheldon Keefe to make some very tough choices when everyone is healthy.

As the saying goes, however, you can never have too much depth. And if given the chance, Sandin is likely to blow his $1.4 million cap for a bargain in no time and blossom into the blue-line staple the Maples have. Leafs are planning for him.

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