Lightning sign franchise cornerstone to four-year deal

The Lightning have extended Victor Hedman’s contract for four more years at $8M per season.

This new deal will start in the 2025-26 season and keep him in Tampa until 2028-29. Both Hedman and the team wanted to avoid free agency next summer, especially after Steven Stamkos left for the Predators. Interestingly, Hedman’s extension is identical in length and value to Stamkos’ Nashville deal. His current cap hit of $7.875M remains for 2024-25, marking a slight increase with this new contract. By the time it ends, Hedman will be 38 years old.

Drafted second overall in 2009, Hedman has been crucial for Tampa Bay. Without him, they wouldn’t have won back-to-back Stanley Cups in 2020 and 2021. The towering Swede was even named Conn Smythe winner during their first championship run. He was a Norris finalist every year from 2016-17 to 2021-22 and won it once . Despite a rough patch two years ago that hinted at a decline, he bounced back last season with an impressive performance: scoring 76 points (13 goals, 63 assists) in just 78 games.

Contract Details:

Hedman’s latest contract shows his importance to the team’s future plans. Last season’s rebound proves he’s still got it, staying healthy and missing no more than six games per season over the past four years. With Ryan McDonagh returning and Mikhail Sergachev traded for J.J. Moser, Hedman will be key to anchoring Tampa’s revamped defense next season.

Fans might think it’s smart keeping such a vital player around longer.

In another big move recently, the Lightning acquired Jake Guentzel’s signing rights from the Hurricanes and signed him to a seven-year deal worth $9M annually. GM Julien BriseBois is clearly focused on keeping Tampa competitive by mixing experienced players like Hedman with younger talent like Guentzel.

Salary Cap Considerations:

Hedman’s new deal doesn’t drastically affect Tampa’s long-term salary cap situation but does highlight one pending issue: J.J. Moser remains an unsigned RFA (restricted free agent). The team would prefer to sign him before arbitration becomes an option but has $6.65M in cap space left with five roster spots open according to CapFriendly.

With Sergachev gone but McDonagh back alongside Moser, only Erik Černak joins Hedman as defensemen signed beyond 2025-26 for now—though forwards like Guentzel are secured through this decade too.

What do you think about these moves?

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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