Stamkos Is Getting Traded. The Question is Where.

So here’s the deal. Steven Stamkos has played his last game as a Bolt last season. The Lightning are strapped for cash and still need to resign Sergachev, Point and Cirelli. Stamkos has been plagued by injuries since he signed his 8 year – $68 million contract in 2016. GM Julien Brisbois has come out and stated that Hedman, Kucherov, Vasilievskiy and Point are untouchable assets to the club. That means Stamkos is open for a trade offer. NHL insider Bob Mackenzie has stated in a tweet that Stammer is done as a member of the Lightning and things are heating up on the trade front.

Yes that tweet was from 2 weeks ago but since then Vegas has been pushing to trade for him but with no success. Hard to trade for a player with a $8.5 million cap hit when you’re already over the cap.

The Avalanche have reportedly been on the hunt for him as well but nothing significant has developed yet.

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The issue for some teams is they’re strapped for cash and close to the cap with pending RFA’s still to sign. Until most of the big RFA signings are settled, GM’s will be kicking tires for now. Its also hard for teams to move Stamkos because he also has a no-movement clause.

Here are a couple of deals that can make sense for the Lightning.

Scenario #1

Tampa Bay Lightning Trade: C Steven Stamkos

Columbus Blue Jackets Trade: RW Olivier Bjorkstrand, LW Trey Fix-Wolansky and 2nd round pick.

Tampa is willing to be patient to get the right offer. The downside is that time is not on their side. Cirelli and Sergachev still need an offer. CBJ can see this as an opportunity to bolster their center position without giving up a ton. A decent rising top 6 winger in Bjorkstrand, a decent prospect in Fix-Wolansky and a 2nd round pick are all what’s needed to nab him. That’ll give the Lightning $6 million more in cap space and CBJ will still have barely enough to sign pending RFA Pierre Luc-Dubois for just under $6 million AAV. A lot of things have to go right to make that happen but Columbus GM Jarmo Kekelainen is aggressive enough to make this deal work.

Scenario #2

Tampa Bay Lightning Trade: C Steven Stamkos

New Jersey Devils Trade: 1st round pick and LW Nolan Foote

Unlike the Blue Jackets trade, this scenario is free from financial restraint. The Devils have loads of cap space and can take the contract on without having to return any roster player. Two high-end assets are needed to get this deal done. Tampa can then resign Sergachev, Cirelli and eventually, Brayden Point. Nolan Foote’s brother D Cal Foote is also a prospect of the Lightning so this gives a glorious chance for the two brothers to develop on the same team. It’s an excellent trade for both teams.

Scenario #3

Tampa Bay Lightning Trade: C Steven Stamkos

Detroit Red Wings Trade: C Joe Veleno, 2nd round pick from EDM and 2nd round pick from NYR

Out of all three of these trade scenerios, Stamkos will most likely waive his NMC (No-movement clause) for Detroit before Columbus and New Jersey. This is the destination that Stamkos is most likely to go to unless a team near the top of the cap makes room for salary elsewhere. Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman is smart. He knows the Bolts are in a difficult situation to move him so he won’t have to get rid of very much to acquire him. Detroit is also close to Stamko’s family in Markham, ON. Only a 4 hour drive away.


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