TORONTO — Nazem Kadri will be at Toronto Maple Leafs training camp after all.
Kadri signed a two-year, US$5.8-million deal on the eve of the start of camp, ending contentious contract talks between the restricted free agent centre and the team.
The deal, which was first reported by Hockey Central Insider Nick Kypreos, comes with an annual salary cap hit of $2.9 million per season.
The $2.9M AAV on Nazem Kadri's new deal is cap-friendly for #leafs. Team hopes they have reason to pay him big time next time.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) September 11, 2013
Kadri enjoyed a stellar 2013, putting up 18 goals and 26 assists in 48 games during his first full NHL season.
The 22-year-old seemed to think that production was enough to earn a long-term contract from the Maple Leafs. Instead, Kadri and Toronto agreed to a so-called "bridge" deal that gives him another two years to prove his value.
— Frazer Mclaren (@Frazermclaren68) September 11, 2013
Montreal Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban missed the start of last season while trying to get a longer deal but eventually settled for two years and $5.75 million. Subban won the Norris Trophy as a 24-year-old.
Kadri’s cap hit of $2.9 million will be higher than Subban’s $2.875 million.
In 99 career games, Kadri has 26 goals and 37 assists. He was the No. 7 pick of the Maple Leafs in the 2009 draft after playing for the London Knights and Kitchener Rangers of the OHL.
Signing Kadri leaves one major question for the Maple Leafs: the status of restricted-free-agent defenceman Cody Franson, who remained unsigned as of Tuesday night. The 26-year-old Franson enjoyed a career year in 2013 with four goals and 25 assists.
The Maple Leafs have roughly $2 million under the salary cap. Training camp begins Wednesday morning.
— Nazem Kadri (@43_Kadri) September 11, 2013
With files from Sportsnet Staff