Mark Giordano Signs Extension With Maple Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed an extremely team-friendly extension with defenseman Mark Giordano, paying him $800,000 per season for two years.

Toronto acquired Giordano, the 2019 Norris Trophy winner, at the 2022 Trade Deadline from the Seattle Kraken. The first captain in Kraken history had new life breathed into his game upon joining Toronto. While he saw more limited ice time, the aging defenseman showed that he could get back to his elite game given less pressure and minutes. Averaging under 20 minutes per game in Toronto for the first time since 2009, Giordano had a very respectable 12 points in 20 regular-season games. He added on two assists in seven playoff games.

While broken up in the playoffs, he and Timothy Liljegren looked absolutely spectacular for the Toronto post-deadline. With similar play styles, Giordano seemed to be the appropriate mentor for the young Liljegren. It’s hard to imagine that they won’t see some more time together in 2022-23.

The 50+ point seasons of yore certainly aren’t in the cards for Giordano moving forward. However, he’s shown the ability over the past few seasons to maintain his defensive game even as his point totals fall. He’s still much more valuable than a standard seventh defenseman, immediately making his contract a steal. If he’s able to maintain that level of defensive play or even just limit its decline, this becomes an extremely valuable signing to add defensive depth on the left side while Rasmus Sandin continues to develop his game.

Giordano was also the recipient of the 2020 Mark Messier Leadership Award, evidencing his long-standing reputation of being a strong voice in the room. Over 1024 career games, the 6’1″ / 200 lb defenseman has 151, 393 assists, and 544 points.

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was first to report the deal.

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