Tampa Bay Lightning re-sign D Jake Dotchin to 2-year deal

CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 24: Marian Hossa
CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 24: Marian Hossa /

The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed 23-year-old defenseman Jake Dotchin to a two-year contract extension.

Tampa Bay Lightning Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman has definitely been a busy man since the doors opened to the 2017 NHL Free Agency Period. The Lightning has been wheeling and dealing since the word ‘go’ and judging by the looks of things, the Bolts aren’t done inking contracts yet.

Just two days ago, the Lightning announced they had come to terms with defenseman Slater Koekkoek on a one-year, one-way contract worth approximately $800.000. This news left one interesting defensive piece still on the table, Lightning defenseman Jake Dotchin.

The good news is the mystery behind whether or not Dotchin will remain on the Lightning roster next season has finally been solved. Steve Yzerman announced earlier this afternoon, via a Press Release on the Lightning’s official site, the team has come to terms with defenseman Jake Dotchin on a two-year, one-way contract. According to the Press Release, Dotchin’s contract carries an average annual value of $812,500.

Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay Lightning /

Tampa Bay Lightning

The 23-year-old defenseman definitely made a name for himself last season. As most Lightning fans will remember, the team was absolutely riddled by injuries throughout the season with the defensive core being hit rather hard. Dotchin was one of many players who got the call to make the trip from Syracuse to help the Bolts keep moving forward, but Dotchin quickly found a way to stand out among the rest.

In the 35 games Dotchin played with the Lightning last season, he was able to bring home a total of 85 hits, which placed him in 5th place on the team; however, when you narrow it down to hits per game, Dotchin led the pack (alongside fellow defenseman Luke Witkowski) with 2.4.

While he may not be on the level of a player like Victor Hedman, Jake Dotchin certainly has the potential to become a solid two-way defenseman. In the aforementioned 35 games he played with the Bolts, Dotchin was able to notch 11 assists. These numbers allowed him to lead the way among the other call-ups last season.

Not entirely surprising, Dotchin spent more time with the Lightning last season than he did with the Lightning’s AHL affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch. Dotchin only played 19 games with the Crunch last season, but in that amount of time, he was able to notch six assists.

While no one has a guaranteed spot on the team at this point and time, Dotchin would make a great permanent fixture on the Lightning’s defensive line. It would be very easy to imagine him being paired up with someone like Victor Hedman when the new season starts on October 6.

Next: Lightning re-sign Slater Koekkoek to one-year deal

There are still a lot of questions looming in the air this off-season, but the good news is, whether or not Dotchin will be on the team next season is no longer among those questions. We here at Bolts By The Bay can’t wait to see what the new season holds for Jake Dotchin and the Tampa Bay Lightning.