Lightning Remain Busy Through Trade Deadline
Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman continued restructuring the Lightning ahead of the heavy lifting that will be done over the summer.
The biggest deal involved center Valtteri Filppula who was dealt to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for defenseman Mark Streit. The Lightning also added a fourth round and conditional seventh round pick in the deal.
Streit wouldn’t remain with the Bolts for long as Yzerman shipped him to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a fourth round draft pick in 2018.
Flexibility To Maneuver:
This trade was genius on the part of Yzerman because it served several purposes. Filppula has another year remaining at $5MM and had to accept this trade to Philadelphia, thus clearing much needed salary cap space. Filppula’s No Movement Clause made him automatically protected in the draft, which ultimately would have left another younger player exposed.
Filppula’s No-Movement Clause made him automatically protected in the draft, which put pressure on both Tampa’s expansion decisions and 2017-18 payroll. By moving Filppula and the final year of his five-year, $5MM contract, the Lightning have had many of those issues alleviated. Rather than choosing who they wanted to leave exposed or which restricted free agent they couldn’t sign, Yzerman will now have more flexibility in his maneuvers
To lessen the blow of losing two draft picks in the deal, Yzerman turned around and dealt Streit to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a 2018 4th round pick. Overall, the Lightning receive all the benefits of moving Filppula and his salary for the cost of a conditional seventh round pick.
Traded Ben Bishop and a fifth-round pick (2017) to the Los Angeles Kings for Peter Budaj, Erik Cernak, a seventh-round pick (2017), and a conditional pick. The draft pick will be determined based on how the Los Angeles Kings do in the playoffs (if they get there) and how Bishop performs.
Flipped Mark Streit to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a 2018 fourth round draft pick.
Traded goalie Adam Wilcox to the Florida Panthers in exchange for goalie Mike McKenna.
Winners or Losers?:
Removing the emotion from the equation, it’s pretty clear that the Tampa Bay Lightning are in fact winners at the trade deadline. Getting solid returns for unrestricted free agents Ben Bishop and forward Brian Boyle and creating the salary/roster flexibility by moving Filppula is quite impressive.