Tampa Bay Lightning: Top 5 Worst Contracts In Team History

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Apr 16, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning fans cheer after they scored a goal against the Detroit Red Wings during the third period in game one of the first round of the the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amalie Arena. Detroit Red Wings defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Mattias Ohlund was at one a solid defenseman for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Even though he hasn’t stepped on the ice in five years, he is still under contract through the end of this season.

Back in the day, Swedish born defenseman Mattias Ohlund was a solid top pair defenseman that could average 24 minutes per game. Now, he doesn’t even participate with the team he is under contract with. The 39-year-old has not worn a Tampa Bay Lightning uniform for five years, but his current contract still affects the team to this day.

Ohlund signed a six-year, $26.25 million dollar contact with the Lightning as an unrestricted free agent before the start of the 2009-10 season. His role was as such; play top pair minutes effectively, be a leader in the locker room, and mentor 18-year-old rookie defenseman and fellow Swede Victor Hedman. Well, at the beginning of the deal, Ohlund performed all of those jobs well. Unfortunately for Ohlund and the Lightning, things started rolling downhill after the end of the 2010-11 season.

At the end of the 2009-10 season, Ohlund underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. After experiencing inflammation in that knee, he was held out of camp and missed time during the season. At the end of the season, he experienced more inflammation in his right knee. After being placed on injured reserve, he once again underwent arthroscopic surgery, this time on both knees. Rehab on the knees was going well until he experienced a setback in the rehab process. This seemed to be the point that Ohlund knew he would probably never play another NHL game as he told the Tampa Tribune back in 2013:

"For a long period of time I’ve been trying to get better and better, but clearly the longer you don’t play, the likelihood of playing again gets smaller and smaller each day, especially at my age. I don’t know long term what my situation will be, but I’m sure it will be figured out shortly.”"

As well all know now, Ohlund never did quite get to the point where he could play again and the team was able to move him to long term injured reserve. This move allows some breathing room when it comes to building the current roster, but at the same time it is not like his salary entirely comes off the books either. Well, that is until July 1st of 2016.

What happened to Mattias Ohlund was unfortunate, but his current contract still ranks among the worst in Tampa Bay Lightning history. Just like Prospal, the deal has affected many Tampa Bay Lightning teams including the 2015-16 team, but starting on July 1st, 2016 Mattias Ohlund and his contract will finally come off the books.

Next: Number 2:Ryan Malone