Toronto Maple Leafs: Kyle Dubas needs to remain firm with Mitch Marner

Mitchell Marner of the Toronto Maple Leafs. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Mitchell Marner of the Toronto Maple Leafs. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

In light of recent rumours with Marner, Kyle Dubas cannot get caught into the game Darren Ferris is playing against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

If you are getting tired of how the Mitch Marner situation is going with the Toronto Maple Leafs, imagine if you are Kyle Dubas.

Of course, the Leafs general manager is less inclined to let twitter speculation dictate his mood. At the same time, you wonder if he is getting annoyed about his agent Darren Ferris bringing out the same playbook that he’s used in the past.

We’re not going to talk about Ferris and Marner right now, instead, we are going to focus on Dubas and why he cannot get sucked into the games that Ferris is reportedly trying to play.

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When it comes to negotiations opposing sides always look at what leverage they have to play in discussions. For Marner and Ferris, it’s trying to get the best deal and we know they are trying to get the Auston Matthews deal. Unfortunately, there are many reasons why that shouldn’t happen and why it’s less likely for it to happen.

The main reason is that Matthews had way more leverage than Marner does because, with all this talk about offer sheets, you can bet without a doubt a team would have given one to Matthews that would have been more than what the Leafs offered.

Dubas knew he had to be proactive and get a deal done and while it would have been nice to have dealt with last off-season. But as we heard from insiders, the Matthews camp had their price and Dubas was able to find a way to negotiate a term and cap that allowed them to retain their franchise player.

This is exactly why the Leafs GM needs to play hardball with Marner even though he took some criticism with how the William Nylander contract negotiation played out. Unlike Matthews and Nylander, the leverage Dubas has in this situation is knowing Marner does not want to play anywhere else.

Marner has made it clear he wants to remain with the Leafs and Dubas knows that just like when John Tavares decided to leave the New York Islanders and a more lucrative offer from the San Jose Sharks to come home.

I’m not suggesting Dubas lowballs Marner into taking a contract that doesn’t reflect his value. Instead, he needs to make it clear that if Marner’s goal is to remain with the Leafs, he needs to realize there is only so much of the pie left for him and it’s still a significant slice.

The GM has the comparables that would suggest what Marner is asking for is not equal to his value considering the position he plays. When you look at the fact that Patrick Kane is the only winger to make more than $10 million in a season and other wingers like Nikita Kucherov, Mark Stone, Blake Wheeler are in the $8.25 million to $9.5 million range, the Leafs should not be looking to set a new market.

If other RFAs are waiting to see what Marner is going to get hoping he sets a new market then they should continue to wait. Dubas should have no pressure to give in and if he is then he should be questioning what Marner’s priorities are because a player who professes he wants to stay shouldn’t be making it this difficult to negotiate.

You also have to wonder to what lengths the Marner camp is willing to go with these negotiations, considering he saw first hand what prolonged negotiations can do to a player’s season. You can’t think he wants to go through what Nylander did considering fans are already getting tired of his agent’s act.

Dubas is not seen as the bad guy in this situation and it will likely stay that way if he holds firm and doesn’t give in, it’ll look good on him with other potential negotiations down the road.

Next. No reason why William Nylander can’t dominate this season. dark

What do you think about the Marner situation right now? Should Dubas be more lenient or should he hold firm with negotiations? Let us know in the comments below.