With the playoffs roaring along, the Toronto Maple Leafs have given goalie Jonas Gustavsson a two-year contract extension. He’ll earn an average of $1.35 million a season under the extension.
The extension proves that the Leafs have at least some faith in their goaltender and should give Gustavsson some confidence going into the new season. He’s going to need all the help he can get, of course, but with this show of support from Leafs management he could be on the right path to something significant.
Gustavsson, a 25-year-old Danderyd, Sweden native, earned the team’s Bill Masterton Trophy awarded for “perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.” He was also named to Team Sweden in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and suited up for the club once for a win.
In 42 games with the Leafs, Gustavsson posted a 16-15-9 record with a 2.87 GAA.
The signing is about as fair as it gets for a goalie showing progress between the pipes. The Leafs may not be certain as to their long-term plans for The Monster, but this extension allows them to show at least a little confidence in Gustavsson without letting it go to his head with a gargantuan salary.
Gustavsson has proven that he’s willing to go through anything to suit up in goal, too. He overcame two heart ablation procedures in the fall to play with the Leafs, so it’s hard to question his resolve. While there are a few technical aspects of his game that he could work out, like his rebound control and lateral movement, The Monster has the right stuff where it counts.
Posted by Jordan Richardson.