We’re closing in arbitration season, folks! It’s that wonderful time of the year where players invent things to brag about as a means of countering the character assassinations that teams give in order to keep guys for cheaper.
In a little while, we’ll have Jake Gardiner and James Reimer, but the first of the bunch appears to be Cody Franson. It seems that every year he has a confusing and tiring contract situation attached to him, but this time, we’ll get a relatively quick ending.
It’s probably going to be bloody, though. With two days remaining, the Leafs are looking for his salary to be set at $2,000,000, while Franson is looking for $4,200,000.
I feel like both sides are off base in this situation, which, I mean, is pretty much a given in an arbitration setting. Of the two though, the Leafs are likely further off. While Franson had an underwhelming season this past year, he still has a careers worth of high-end 5 on 5 production numbers. Past the 300 game mark of his career, you’d think he’d be making beyond $2 million. Especially as you approach UFA years.
On the subject of UFA years, the only way the Leafs avoid that headache is by settling on a multi-year deal ahead of the hearing. Any ruling will involve a 1 year contract, which will carry him to unrestricted status in 2015.