Tampa Bay Lightning sign F Tyler Johnson to a 7-Year Contract Extension

TAMPA, FL - APRIL 2: Tyler Johnson
TAMPA, FL - APRIL 2: Tyler Johnson /

The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed forward Tyler Johnson to a seven-year contract extension with an Average Annual Value of $5 million.

The Bolts Nation was sent into disarray last week when Tampa Bay Lightning forwards Ondrej Palat and Tyler Johnson had not yet been signed to a new contract and announced to the world they had officially filed for salary arbitration. This is not always a bad thing, but at the end of the day, it’s certainly not a good thing.

Not long after, the questions started flying like lightning bolts through the night sky. Would Palat and/or Johnson be a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning next season? How much cash would it take for the Lightning to lock one or both of them to a deal? These are just a few of the questions making the rounds.

The good news here is, we finally have an answer to a few of these pending questions. Tampa Bay Lightning Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced just moments ago in a Press Release on the Lightning’s official website the organization has come to terms with Lightning forward Tyler Johnson on a seven-year contract extension.

Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay Lightning /

Tampa Bay Lightning

According to the Press Release, Johnson’s shiny new contract with the Lightning is worth an Average Annual Value of $5 million. This is definitely a healthy bump from the $3.33 million AAV his previous contract with the Bolts carried.

Many fans here in the Bolts Nation felt a deal with Johnson’s partner-in-crime, Ondrej Palat, should be the Lightning’s top priority moving towards their respective arbitration dates. However, if you look at things logically, a deal for Palat should not be far off. These two are thick as thieves, and it would be hard to imagine one without the other in a Lightning uniform next season.

Tyler Johnson’s career with the Lightning has definitely been filled with highlight reel moments. As most Lightning fans will remember, Johnson was a part of the Norfolk Admirals, the Lightning’s then-AHL affiliate, team that captured the 2012 Calder Cup.

In Johnson’s rookie season, he (along with Ondrej Palat) was nominated for the Calder Memorial Trophy; an award given to the league’s top rookie. Unfortunately, the Calder Memorial Trophy would be awarded to Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon.

Tyler Johnson had a career-high season in the 2014-15 season. In the 77 games he played in the regular season, Johnson was able to bring home 29 goals and 43 assists for a total of 72 points. These numbers put him in a tie for first place on the team in overall points with Lightning captain Steven Stamkos.

Unfortunately, at the conclusion of the playoffs that season, it was announced Johnson had played much of the Stanley Cup Final with a broken wrist. This injury would have long-lasting effects on his play over the next couple of seasons.

More From Bolts By The Bay: Johnson, Palat Arbitration Predictions

The injury has come back to haunt him more than once, and his performance on the ice has suffered as a result. Last season, Johnson played in a total of 66 games with the Lightning. In this amount of time, Johnson brought home 19 goals and 26 assists for a total of 45 points. This is just seven points shy of a career-low for Johnson.

Hopefully, the off-season will bring a sense of mental and physical stability for the 26-year-old. The Tampa Bay Lightning have many of the pieces in place that could help the Bolts make a solid run for the Stanley Cup this season. A lot of hard work is ahead for each and every player in the coming season, but the Lightning have overcome adversity in the past, and nothing is stopping them from making a repeat performance.

Next: Lightning re-sign Jake Dotchin to 2-Year Extension

We here at Bolts By The Bay are happy the Tampa Bay Lightning has secured Tyler Johnson for another seven years. This will put him on the same timeline as some of the Lightning’s heaviest hitters. Hopefully, the circumstances will remain the same and the Bolts heavy hitters will all lock down in expedited fashion.