Follow Lukas on Twitter @THWLukasHardonk for more Maple Leafs coverage.
The Toronto Maple Leafs announced the signing of forward Carl Gunnarsson to a two-year, $2.65 million contract on Tuesday afternoon.
Gunnarsson will make $1.4 million in the first year of the contract and $1.25 in the second. His salary will force a cap hit of just over $1.3 million against the Leafs for the next two seasons. He was set to become a restricted free agent on July 1.
The 24-year-old said via Twitter, “Thanks everyone. Looking forward to being a Leaf for the next 2 yrs. Love T.O : )”
Gunnarsson scored four goals and assisted on another 16 goals in 68 games last season. In 111 career regular season games, he has seven goals and 28 assists for a total of 35 points to go along with a plus-6 rating. Although shaky at times, he has made great strides in the defensive side in his game.
The Orebro, Sweden native also represented his home country at 2011 IIHF World Championship, where he registered two assists and a plus-5 rating.
$2.65 million seems to be a reasonable number for both parties – the Maple Leafs and Gunnarsson. The Maple Leafs still have plenty of salary cap space to work with in terms of re-signing impending UFAs and RFAs such as Clarke MacArthur and Luke Schenn. Leafs general manager Brian Burke can then use the remaining money in the free agent market, where it is believed the Leafs will shoot for a big time player.
Information from TSN.ca was used in this post.