Lightning’s 4 worst contracts for the 2022-23 season

As you sift through the Tampa Bay Lightning contract list heading into the 2022-23 season, it can be hard to find an objective bad deal that acts as an anchor for the franchise. Over the past few years, the team has done a stellar job of committing its own developed talent to below-market-value deals and trading players who could earn more than they can bring onto the ice each night.

This made it quite difficult to discuss the Lightning when it came to the real bad contracts. Sure, they have overpriced or risky deals, but there’s nothing glaring that you can easily underline as bad.

So what all of this means is that even though these are the four worst deals for Tampa Bay heading into the 2022-23 season, that doesn’t mean any of these offers are particularly bad. It’s just that, in the grand scheme of things, these players might be slightly overpaid for their production, or they have a clear problem that can limit their effectiveness on the ice.

#4: Point Brayden: $9.5 million

Part of the reason I spent so much time explaining why I thought the Lightning didn’t have a bad contract is to try to help justify why. Brayden Point is on this list at all. As a frontline center capable of scoring at a 40-goal, 100-point pace, Point is well worth his $9.5 million contract extension that begins this season.

However, there are a few questions regarding Point. First of all, he is coming out of a major quad tear suffered in game 7 of round 1 in the 2022 playoffs. Even though he tried to return to the ice for the Stanley Cup final, it was clear that he was not healthy enough to play and he was kicked out of the roster soon after. As a player known for his speed and strength while skating, a major quad tear could have long term negative effects on his game plan that would completely change his effectiveness on the ice.

Robert M. Larson