Maple Leafs’ Auston Matthews unsure if he’ll sign new deal before season

Toronto Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews. (Darryl Dyck/CP)

Toronto Maple Leafs star centre Auston Matthews says that while negotiations on a new contract are underway, he’s still unsure if he’ll sign a new contract anytime soon, and he’s cool with that.

“I don’t know if I’ll sign a new contract before the season or not,” Matthews told NHL.com’s Dave Hogg Sunday. “I’m not really involved with the talks. That’s something being dealt with by my agents and team management.

“They’ve told me that it will get done when it gets done, and that’s fine.”

Matthews is entering the final season of his entry-level contract and is set to become a restricted free agent.

Having racked up 132 points and 74 goals in his first two NHL seasons, the 20-year-old will be looking at a considerable raise over his current entry-level deal, which carries a cap hit of $925,000 before bonuses.

Earlier in the summer, when talks between his camp and the Leafs first began, Matthews appeared just as laidback about the entire process as he seems now.

“They’ve obviously started [negotiating]. It’s not something I’m too in tune with. I let my agent and management handle that and focus on my summer, training, getting on the ice and being ready for the season,” Matthews told Sportsnet’s Luke Fox in late July. “When it gets done, it gets done, but I don’t think anybody’s in too big of a rush.”

Besides Matthews, the Maple Leafs have a more pressing need in William Nylander, who is a restricted free agent and still remains without a contract with the club with training camp set to begin in about two weeks’ time.

By the looks of things, the Nylander deal could go right down to the wire, meaning a similar course of action could apply to Matthews around this time next year.

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