Will this Playoffs be the Last for Alex Killorn in Tampa?

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

Alex Killorn has been a beloved and essential figure during this era of success for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Despite scoring many big goals, Killorn has remained an unsung character amongst all of the superstars on his team. With him now in the final year of his contract, the reality that this could be the last run for him in Tampa Bay is becoming a reality.

Killorn is in the final season of a seven year contract that saw him paid $4.45 million annually. Killorn turns 34 later this year and it is very hard to imagine him getting that same dollar amount on his next contract from Tampa Bay.

Next year alone, Tampa Bay will be increasing their pay on younger players in Anthony Cirelli, Mikhail Sergachev and Erik Cernak. Those three players are getting significant raises too. In addition to these three beginning more expensive contracts, Ross Colton and Tanner Jeannot will probably be priorities for the Lightning to re-sign as well this summer. Brandon Hagel’s next contract is not too far on the horizon as well. To say the least, there might not be much money left to send Killorn’s way.

Killorn has expressed his desire to retire as a member of the Lightning in the past and that will certainly be put to the test this summer. He will likely be able to earn more money and potentially longer term if he is to land somewhere other than the Lightning. If he is to re-sign to stay in Tampa, he will likely have to take a significant home-town discount.

Tampa Bay is in a tough position too because they would surely like to bring Killorn back on a team friendly deal to stay competitive but Killorn continues to produce great numbers. In each of the last two seasons, he has had the highest point totals if his career. This year he reached 64 points, passing what was a career high set in the previous season of 59.

Killorn has scored numerous big goals in the playoffs in recent years. Despite not scoring a single goal in last year’s run to the Stanley Cup Final, Killorn is still able to have an impact through his leadership and willingness to go into the corners and win puck battles while being a very responsible player defensively.

One of the greatest bargaining points in his favor will be his availability. Since becoming a full time NHL’er during the 2013-14 season, Killorn has missed just 13 games in 10 full NHL seasons. He has gotten to over 800 career games quickly because of his remarkable durability and has not missed a regular season game since the 2019-20 season.

With his impressive run of durability and important contributions to playoff success, Killorn probably will have a several suitors lining up to give him one last sizable pay day for his career. Whether that is in Tampa or not will be one of the most interesting developments to follow this summer.

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