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John Tavares Leaves the Islanders to Join the Maple Leafs

John Tavares Leaves the Islanders to Join the Maple Leafs


The superstar center John Tavares is going home, agreeing to terms on a $77 million, seven-year contract with his childhood team, the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Tavares announced his intentions on Twitter on Sunday and posted a picture of himself as a child in Maple Leafs bedding. The team said the deal was worth $11 million a season for seven years.

Tavares, 27, met with the Leafs, the Islanders, the San Jose Sharks, the Boston Bruins, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Dallas Stars over the past several days in Los Angeles to hear their pitches for his services.

A native of Mississauga, Ontario, Tavares had 37 goals and 47 assists for 84 points in 82 games for the Islanders last season. He has 621 points in 669 career regular-season games.

Losing Tavares is a crushing blow to the Islanders, who made him the No. 1 pick of the 2009 N.H.L. draft. He has been the face of the franchise since. The team has undergone an organizational makeover in recent months under the relatively new owners Scott Malkin and Jon Ledecky. The Islanders hired Lou Lamoriello as president of hockey operations and Barry Trotz as coach weeks after he won the Stanley Cup.





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