Former Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Matt Carle has been signed to a one-year deal by the Nashville Predators.
The 2015-16 off-season has been an interesting one for the Tampa Bay Lightning. While there are many players like Lightning captain Steven Stamkos, defenseman Victor Hedman, and forward Alex Killorn and Vladislav Namestnikov have had their futures secured with the Tampa Bay Lightning, there were some players who wouldn’t be so lucky and would find themselves in search of a new home.
One of those aforementioned players was former Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Matt Carle. After being plagued with pitfalls for the last two seasons in a row, Lightning Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman decided it was best overall for the team if they were to cut ties with the veteran defenseman. As you can imagine, the Lightning executed their buyout to rid themselves of Carle’s $5.5 million/per year contract.
Obviously, this left Matt Carle without a team for the 2016-17 season. Thankfully for the 31-year-old defenseman, he was able to quickly find a new place to call home and should be ready to go by the start of the 2016-17 season. Nashville Predators General Manager David Poile announced via the Predators official site the organization has come to terms with Carle on a one-year contract.
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Unfortunately for Carle, his new deal is nothing like the deal he had with the Tampa Bay Lightning. According to the Predators GM, Matt Carle’s new one-year deal is worth $700,000. This is a far cry from the $5.5 million he had with the Tampa Bay Lightning before having his contract bought out. On the bright side, this is in addition to the $2.75 million the Bolts will be on the hook for over the next four years.
The buying out of Matt Carle’s contract was a double-edged sword for some Lightning fans. Carle was definitely a stand-up guy, to the players, the fans, and in the community. Unfortunately, his compiling shortcomings began to creep their way to the forefront, and for the price the Lightning were paying for him, it was simply bad for business.
This doesn’t mean Carle doesn’t have the potential to be an excellent defenseman. In 2006, while playing for the University of Denver, Matt Carle was awarded the Hobey Baker Award. This award is presented to the NCAA player who “”exhibits strength of character both on and off the ice” and “contributes to the integrity of the team and displays outstanding skills in all phases of the game.”
There is no telling what the future holds for Matt Carle. The one thing we know for sure is it will be a lot more interesting when the Tampa Bay Lightning play the Nashville Predators this coming season.