Tampa Bay Lightning Trade Rumor: Steven Stamkos Headed To Detroit

Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

There is a lot of speculation circulating the draft floor that the Detroit Red Wings are clearing out cap space to entice Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos.

The rumors have been flying all night long that Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos and Lightning netminder Ben Bishop are being aggressively pursued by numerous organizations. As each of those aforementioned teams make their picks, Tampa Bay Lightning fans have been breathing temporary sighs of relief. Unfortunately, there is still plenty more trade talk to be had.

Everyone has heard at some point this season the level of which the Toronto Maple Leafs, and more specifically their fans, are planning to pursue Stamkos. Unfortunately for Tampa Bay Lightning fans, it looks as if there is yet another team who, after making a few moves on the draft floor, seem to be clearing out room to acquire Steven Stamkos.

The Detroit Red Wings were able to pull off the unthinkable as they unloaded the contract of veteran forward Pavel Datsyuk, who has made it clear he plans on returning to the KHL next season, and clear up quite a bit of cap space. Of course, after losing Datsyuk, the Detroit Red Wings are going to need someone to fill the incredibly large gap left behind by Datsyuk. Enter Steven Stamkos.

According to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger, there is something rather suspicious in the Red Wings dumping off the cap space that comes with Pavel Datsyuk. Dreger believes the move was motivated by their interest in Steven Stamkos.

Unfortunately, when you really look at the numbers and the amount of contracts the Lightning still needs to sign this season, it simply doesn’t seem financially feasible for the Tampa Bay Lightning to keep Stamkos moving forward. The Lightning have already been rumored to have made an offer of $8.5 million per year for a total of eight years. At the same time, if Stamkos was interested in this deal, we’re sure he would’ve signed it by now.

With less than a week before the Free Agency Period officially opens, the Tampa Bay Lightning needs to make their final stand. If they really want to keep Stamkos in Lightning blue, they need to come up with a reasonable deal for him sooner rather than later. If they plan to let him go, a deal needs to be done in the next five days before Stamkos has the opportunity to walk away with the Lightning getting nothing in return.

No matter which way you slice things, this situation would be a catastrophic end to this situation for not only the Tampa Bay Lightning organization but their fans as well.

Next: 5 Possible Destinations For A Free Agent Stamkos

We are now just three picks away from the Tampa Bay Lightning’s first round selection. It will definitely be interesting to see what Steve Yzerman has in store for the Bolts and their fans. Let’s hope the removal of the band-aid doesn’t hurt as bad as we think it will.