Report: Leafs and Kadri talking contract

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The Toronto Maple Leafs and forward Nazem Kadri have begun talks on a long-term contract.

According to Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos, the Leafs are looking for a five-year deal.

Kadri is in the final year of a two-year $5.8 million contract, which carries a $2.9 million cap hit.

The Ontario native has 12 goals and 26 points in 45 games entering tonight’s action and should at the very least be able to match the career-high 20 goals he notched last season.

The 24-year-old has had his name dragged through the trade rumor mill in the past and depending on how the contract discussions go, he could be the center of trade speculation once again leading up to the March 2 trade deadline.

Toronto has $53.24 million in cap space allocated to 15 players for next season. The salary cap is expected to be somewhere between $71-$73 million for the 2015-16 season.