Just in time for the regular season, the Tampa Bay Lightning has re-signed forward Brayden Point to a three-year deal.
The regular season is right around the corner and up until a little while ago, there was still a major piece missing for the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning opened up training camp without a certain young Canadian forward by the name of Brayden Point.
Thankfully, the Tampa Bay Lightning has successfully remedied this issue. Tampa Bay Lightning Vice President and General Manager Julien BriseBois announced moments ago the team has officially come to terms with Point on a three-year deal worth an average of $6.75 million per year.
One can safely assume the noise you just heard resonating around Tampa was the sound of Lightning fans breathing a huge sigh of relief. Most Bolts fans assumed this deal would’ve been the first one on the table as soon as the window opened, but here we are quickly approaching the regular season with little to no assurances in play.
Originally, Brayden Point was drafted by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Third Round (79th Overall) in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Since then, Point has been climbing the ranks and quickly proving to be one of the best offensive assets the team has in its arsenal.
The 23-year-old forward gave a breakout performance during the Lightning’s record-setting 2018-19 season. In the 79 games Point played last season, he brought home 41 goals and 51 assists for a grand total of 92 points.
This put Point in third place on the team in points preceded only by Steven Stamkos and the team’s points leader, Nikita Kucherov. All three of the aforementioned stats were new career bests for Brayden Point.
While the Bolts Nation is definitely elated and excited to have Brayden Point sticking around for the next couple of years, most fans would be lying to you if they said they weren’t at least a little surprised at the terms of the deal. It wasn’t long ago that Point’s agent, Gerry Johannson, was discussing how very far apart the two sides were in the process.
The deal that was finally agreed upon by both sides speaks volumes about Brayden Point. There is no denying Point could’ve entertained offers from other teams which more than likely would have pulled him in much more bank than he’s getting here in Tampa. However, Point elected to work with the team on a short-term deal for a reasonable AAV and give it another go with the Bolts.
If Brayden Point continues to play the way he has for the last three seasons and continually finds himself in the same conversation as players like Stamkos and Kucherov, the Lightning is going to need to take out a small business loan in order to ensure he stays here in the Bolts Nation long-term.
It has definitely been a trying couple of months for Tampa Bay Lightning fans, but the wait is finally over. Brayden Point will be wearing Lightning blue for another three seasons, and hopefully many more beyond. The Lightning opens up the 2019-20 season on October 3 against the Florida Panthers. Thankfully, the Lightning will now have one of the most important puzzle pieces in place when the puck drops.