NHL free agency 2018: Ryan McDonagh agrees to seven-year extension with Lightning
The veteran defenseman was acquired by the Lightning at last season's trade deadline
Ryan McDonagh can get comfortable in Tampa. The veteran defenseman has inked a seven-year contract extension with the Lightning, the team announced on Sunday afternoon. The new deal, which will kick in after next season, will be worth $47.25 million, or an average annual value of $6.75 million.
The new deal will take effect during McDonagh's age 30 season and run through 2027, which is a significant commitment for the Lightning for a player that will likely see a significant decline over the lifespan of this deal. But the average annual value is solid for now, as McDonagh is a significant piece on the Lightning's blue line as they look to contend for a Stanley Cup over the next handful of years.
McDonagh was acquired by the Lightning at last season's trade deadline in a blockbuster trade with the New York Rangers. Though not offensively explosive, McDonagh is a very solid defensive presence and is a tremendous shot-blocker. He served in a top-four role and averaged 22:31 of ice time per game in the playoffs as the Lightning advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals before being eliminated by the Capitals in seven games.
Barring some very savvy maneuvering from general manager Steve Yzerman, this extension likely takes the Lightning out of the running in the Erik Karlsson trade talks. Tampa was one of the teams closely linked to Karlsson trade rumors over the past year.
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