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Stamkos Sticks With Tampa Bay

Lauren Ammatuna |
July 25, 2011 | 10:54 a.m. PDT

Contributing Writer


Stamkos surprised hockey fans by staying with the Lightning. (Anthony Shao via Creative Commons)
Stamkos surprised hockey fans by staying with the Lightning. (Anthony Shao via Creative Commons)
The waiting game is finally over.  Nineteen days into free agency the Tampa Bay Lightning and their star player, Steven Stamkos, agreed last week to a 5 year $37.5 million contract. 


Prior to this contract agreement, there were many rumors flying around the hockey world that Stamkos was not going to re-sign.  There was speculation about a trade with the Philadelphia Flyers, and maybe even the Los Angeles Kings.  Since it is not everyday that an NHL superstar is a free agent, there was also the theory that teams would send offer sheets his way.  However, this particular rumor did not have a lot of supporters since GMs are extremely wary of the offer sheet, as they are fearful that when one of their own top players is eligible someone will try to take them away as pay back.  


Tampa Bay won Lord Stanley back in 2004, but has not been able to provide their fans with a thrilling season since.  However, the Lightning amazed their fans, and the entire NHL, when they were able to make it all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals this year in the playoffs.  Stamkos personally amazed hockey fans the world over when he took a puck to the face that broke his nose in game 7 of the conference finals.  He was only off the ice for a few minutes before returning to play with a face cage in the game that ultimately eliminated Tampa Bay from the playoffs.  


So, for the next five years Stamkos will remain in Tampa Bay.  Stamkos shared the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy, given to the player who scores the most goals in the regular season, with Sidney Crosby back in 2010.  Crosby and Stamkos tied with 51 goals.  Stamkos finished this 2010-2011 season with 45 goals, 46 assists, 91 points, and 74 PIM.  Since Stamkos is only 21 years old, it will undoubtedly prove exciting to see the amazing player he will become. 


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