In some recent contract news, the Tampa Bay Lightning have managed to lock up goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy for another eight years. This announcement came earlier today.
The contract, as per Elliotte Friedman, is reported to be within the region of $9.5 million average annual value (AAV) and almost $45 million in signing bonuses. A no-movement clause will also kick in next season for the first four years of the contract, as per Joe Smith. This contract (beginning in the 2020/21 season) will place the goaltender amongst the highest-paid earners on the Lightning roster. Fellow Russian Nikita Kucherov acts as a comparator at a $9.5 million AAV.
Vasilevskiy, 25, has been formidable in net since the departure of Ben Bishop in 2017 via a trade with the Los Angeles Kings. In the 2018 season, Vasilevskiy amassed 53 starts, posting a 39-10-4 record, with a 2.40 goals-against average (GAA) and a .919 save percentage (SV%). It was these numbers that ultimately elevated him above the rest of the field, earning him a Vezina Trophy win. The first goalie to do so for the Lightning. Vasilevskiy’s stellar numbers have continued throughout his 208 starts for the club. He currently boasts a 124-59-15 record, with a 2.55 GAA and a .919 SV%, with 18 shutouts.
Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois remarked The Lightning are “very proud” to have extended Vasilevskiy. He also noted that the goaltender has an “unmatched work ethic and professionalism both on and off the ice”. Vasilevskiy himself stated that he was “excited to sign this extension with the Lightning”.
With the “Big Cat” now locked in place, eyes once again to the ongoing contract negotiations with forward Brayden Point. No further developments have emerged as of late.
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