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Leafs sign Phaneuf to seven-year extension

Dec 31, 2013, 10:23 AM EDT

As expected, the Toronto Maple Leafs and their captain, defenseman Dion Phaneuf, have come together on a seven-year contract extension that’s worth a reported $49 million.

To commemorate the moment, here’s…this:


That, of course, is Leafs general manager Dave Nonis shaking hands with Phaneuf.

“Dion is our team leader and has been a pillar in our building process,” said Nonis in a release. “He has proven to be a very durable and reliable defenseman in all facets of the game. He plays big minutes in every situation for us and we’re pleased to have him under contract for the next seven seasons.”

“This is a very proud day for me and my family,” said Phaneuf. “I’m very honored to be the captain of this historic franchise and to maintain the opportunity to play and represent the Toronto Maple Leafs for many years to come. We have passionate fans and a dedicated ownership group. I have great teammates and look forward to growing with them and achieving our goal of winning.”

Phaneuf, 28, is now under contract through 2020-21. He joins other Leafs signed to long-term deals, including Phil Kessel, Joffrey Lupul, David Clarkson, James van Riemsdyk, and Tyler Bozak.

Phaneuf and Nonis will speak to the media at 1:30 pm ET to discuss the deal.

Per CapGeek, here are the top 10 cap hits for NHL defensemen (Phaneuf’s cap hit will be $7 million starting next season):


  1. 950003cups - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    Dang! There goes my hopes of him getting signed in NJ

  2. upyourstodd - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    Do Maple Leaf fans actually like Phaneuf? That is a question I have never really had answered. I mean, if they don’t, they should probably learn to. Doubt that contract will be tradeable.

    • xdj511 - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:34 AM

      Well Elisha Cuthbert likes him, with should count for something.

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Dec 31, 2013 at 1:55 PM

      When I’m at the rink I get the sense that some fans like him and some seem to think he’s Aki Berg, but he doesn’t seem to be anyone’s favourite.

      Personally I think he’s a good, solid player and I’m glad they locked him up. It’s nice to see that the front office actually has some type of plan for building a team. It’s been at least a decade or three since that could be said.

  3. esracerx46 - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:38 AM

    Absent from that list of names…Duncan Keith. Hawks at the moment have him for a bargain. But like all long term contracts, it’s in the latter stages where you find out true value. Some look questionable to begin with, and Phaneuf’s looks like one of those.

  4. muckleflugga - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    p.t. barnum said it best…

    on a related note, aging snipers in the east pondering retirement when current contracts expire, are scrambling to get their agents to rework those deals with an eye to extending productivity and fattening legacy stats…

    their mothers and significant others are stripping phaneuf’s portrait from dart boards and urinals, then placing it lovingly on the mantle…next to the queen…

    it’s like ‘money from heaven’ one was heard to blare four fifths of the way through a forty pounder of irish cream…

    a ‘golden parachute’ heard from another, picking through the last of a turkey that could have fed a threshing crew, and likely did…

    nonis…ho hoho ha hahaaha ha aghhh ahaha gagaa gaag snorkel splutter …

    merry christmas dion…enjoy your coal taranna

  5. lowenni - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    While the cap hit is a little high (I would’ve preferred to give him 6 mil), I think this is a pretty solid deal for the leafs. They needed him locked up and there’s no one on the roster to replace him if he had left. Call him overrated all you want, he still is their top defenseman and plays against other teams best players for them. The Leafs D-core is young and he’ll be there to mentor them.

  6. joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    Best to get him signed before the cap goes up following the Rogers Media deal. He would have cost more in a couple of years from now. Good signing!

    You can expect PK to sign for 7.5 – 8.0.

    • skr213 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:33 PM

      PK and Dion should make about the same amount – that much we agree on. Personally, if I were a GM, I wouldn’t spend more than 5.5 on either of them and with the personalities of both, I wouldn’t sign either to more than 3 years. In other words, neither would sign on my team and I’m okay with that.

      • joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:52 PM

        Winning the Norris Trophy gives the agent more bargaining power and less to the GM. They will have to pay him more than Phaneuf and Doughty for that reason. Plus an additional bargaining chip if PK makes the Olympic team. So, he should end up in the top 4 or 5 paid d men.

      • skr213 - Dec 31, 2013 at 4:41 PM

        Absolutely agreed re the power of the trophy on his bargaining power. Nevermind that he was the least worthy Norris winner in decades. I know he will get paid a lot, but I don’t think he deserves it. I’ll take a minimal point creating team player Dman like Vlasic, who has actual serious skills in his own end, over a primadonna who has mediocre skills in his own zone any day.

      • joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 4:52 PM

        Are you a sharks fan by chance? 😃

      • skr213 - Dec 31, 2013 at 6:01 PM

        Regardless of my team(s), Pickles is one of the most under-rated Dmen in the league, and he remains a humble team-first kid. I don’t think anyone has ever, or will ever, describe Neon Dion as a team-first kind of guy.

  7. rendy0212 - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    Doesn’t Kris Letang’s new contract kick in next season? Where is he on that list since I think he’s set to make 7.25

  8. nj666 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    This should make for good tv when its on HBO…

    • nj666 - Dec 31, 2013 at 2:57 PM

      not sure why all the neg, this will be on HBO

  9. skr213 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:29 PM

    AHAHAHAHAHA!!! Man, have fun with that one Leaf fans. Seven more years without a Cup, that’s for sure.

  10. elguapo12 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    Wow! My condolences to Leafs fans. Being a top 2 d man on the Leafs doesn’t make you a top 20 d man in the league, let alone top 10. Phaneuf, Clarkson…how will they handcuff the franchise next?

  11. spitfisher - Dec 31, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    7 years, you must be joking? Stupid signing. The cap hit for 3 years at 21 and 7 years at 49 is the same

  12. drewsylvania - Dec 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM


  13. montrealbbr - Dec 31, 2013 at 4:22 PM

    Overrated and always seems to do something stupid when the game is on the line. Sucks to be a Toronto fan!

  14. atwatercrushesokoye - Dec 31, 2013 at 4:49 PM

    Bouwmeester’s new contract starts next year and is for $5.4 per year, it’s a pretty easy answer as to which of the two players I’d rather have (never mind Calgary once had them both) and which is the better deal.

    I have to hand it to Nonis though, he actually found a way for us to be able to argue that Suter is grossly underpaid.

  15. seabass08 - Dec 31, 2013 at 8:18 PM

    Thank you Nonis! As a Bruin fan I am ecstatic with that signing. Whoever posted that a teams top guy does not make that guy a top player in the league is right on. From the many games I have watched between the two teams I can say that he frequently goes for a big hit and takes himself out of position leading to odd man rushes. He does play against the Bruins top line and gets used and abused. Can’t wait to watch 7 more years of it.

  16. gret9 - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:49 PM

    If he is worth $7 mil, wtf is Duncan Keith worth? Thank god Keith is locked up @ $5.5 mil per year until he is 38. That deal is going to look better and better as the years go by.

  17. gret9 - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:54 PM

    Also, imho a major factor in the Blackhawks 2nd cup was Stan getting Tallon to take Soupy’s albatross contract (that Tallon signed him to in the first place) off of their books giving them some much needed cap space.

  18. slysipops - Jan 1, 2014 at 11:53 AM

    wow 7 years ? better order a 5 gal. bucket of vite. B 12 and a few cases of MINERAL RICH !

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