Lightning among losers, Flames with winners in free agency
The Tampa Bay Lightning won the Stanley Cup and lost a lot on day one of the NHL Free Agency.
The Lightning just couldn't afford to keep a trio of RPG players: defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk, center Tyler Johnson, and center Carter Verhaeghe.
Johnson was put on waiver while Shattenkirk and Verhaeghe left the lights as free agents on Friday.
As much as Tampa Bay wanted to keep every player, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced teams to make tough decisions because they don't know when fans will be in the stands to generate revenue to pay the bills Lids with a flat rate are required.
Johnson, who had seven points in 25 playoff games, had three years left on a seven-year $ 35 million contract that included a no-trade clause. Shattenkirk agreed to a three-year deal with the Anaheim Ducks, and a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press that the deal would pay him $ 11.7 million. The person spoke on condition of anonymity as the deal was not announced. Carter, meanwhile, stayed in the state by agreeing to a two-year deal with the Florida Panthers.
Here's a look at who seemed to be winning and losing on the free agency's opening day:
The Calgary Flames improved their chances of advancing the playoffs for the first time since 2004 by adding what may be the best goalkeeper out there. The Flames beat the competition for Jacob Markstrom with a six-year contract worth $ 36 million. Markstrom, 30, was an All-Star last season, finishing fourth in the Vezina Trophy vote.
Alex Pietrangelo and Taylor Hall would probably have agreed on lucrative deals during the opening hours of the free agency if they had hit the market at a different time. That year, however, both two-time all-stars were still available late Friday night.
Pietrangelo has spent his entire 12-year career with the St. Louis Blues, which put him in 4th place overall in 2008. However, his time with the franchise ended when defender Torey Krug signed a seven-year deal for $ 45.5 million.
The 28-year-old Hall won the NHL MVP Award two years ago and has scored 218 goals in his 10-year career. This makes him an attractive option for a team that can afford to add him.
GOAL TO GO
While there was less business done on the free agency's opening day, many teams made adding or keeping a goalkeeper a priority.
The Canucks tried to make up for Markstrom's loss by adding to Braden Holtby on a two-year deal for $ 8.6 million. Henrik Lundqvist signed a one-year deal with Washington two weeks after his deal was bought out by the New York Rangers.
Minnesota signed a three-year, $ 11 million deal with Cam Talbot. Anton Khudobin, who helped the Dallas Stars reach the Stanley Cup Finals, signed for $ 10 million for three years. The Ottawa Senators agreed to a two-year $ 25 million deal with the newly acquired Matt Murray.
Two-time cup winner Corey Crawford left Chicago to sign a $ 7.8 million two-year deal with New Jersey.
SWING AND MISS
The Montreal Canadiens wanted to be bigger, harder and harder to play. They tried to sign winger Wayne Simmonds but the Canadians watched Simmonds take less money to sign with his hometown Toronto Maple Leafs.
BET ON YOURSELF
Bobby Ryan hopes to become a feel-good story by resurrecting his career after changing his life. He agreed to a $ 1 million one-year deal with the Detroit Red Wings after missing more than two months last season while dealing with drinking problems.
The 33-year-old winger is shooting to regain the form he was in a decade ago as a top scorer in the NHL to turn a productive season into a bigger and longer contract.
AP Hockey writers Stephen Whyno and John Wawro contributed to this report.
For more information on AP NHL, please visit https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
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