If rumors out of Toronto are accurate, Phil Kessel is in line for a big-time payday.
Multiple members of the hockey media, including TSN’s Bob McKenzie and Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston, reported Monday night that Kessel and the Maple Leafs are working on a contract extension that will keep the veteran winger in Toronto for the foreseeable future.
The deal, which has not yet been agreed upon, will reportedly pay Kessel in the neighborhood of $8 million per year for the next seven to eight years.
Kessel has been an offensive stud for the Leafs since coming over from Boston in a 2009 trade, leading the team in goals and points in each of his four seasons in Toronto. He led the team in all three scoring categories in 2011-12 and again this past season, which culminated in Toronto’s first trip to the playoffs since 2004.
Kessel’s current deal, which is worth $5.4 million annually, is set to expire at the end of this season. McKenzie and others report that the two sides would like to come to an agreement on an extension prior to Tuesday night’s season opener in Montreal.