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Report: Maple Leafs willing to take contract back in Kessel trade

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports / USA TODAY Sports

After a report this week suggested the Toronto Maple Leafs asking price for Phil Kessel was too high, it seems the club is willing to sweeten the pot.

The team is prepared to take back salary, Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman stated in his "30 Thoughts" column Sunday.

"Toronto's let it be known it will take salary back for Phil Kessel, but there is a limit. It's got to be less (in term and value) than Kessel's," said Friedman.

The team is looking for draft picks and prospects in a potential deal for Kessel, but reportedly understands they might need to be a little more flexible if they plan to move Kessel's huge contract.

The 27-year-old has seven years remaining on his contract that pays him an average of $8 million per season.

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