The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk to a one-year contract worth $1.75 million.
For the Lightning, this is an inexpensive short-term signing that will help them load up for another Stanley Cup run. Shattenkirk will have more time to familiarize himself with the Bolts’ system than he did when he was acquired by the Washington Capitals as a rental during the 2016-17 season.
For Shattenkirk, he is being given a season to prove that his surgically repaired knee won’t affect him going forward. As well, he has made his money (about $36 million, according to Cap Friendly), so now the focus turns to winning a Stanley Cup. Tampa could also be a better spot for him, since he won’t be counted on to be the guy with the contract and he’ll have considerably more talent around him.
For the Bolts, Norris Trophy finalist Victor Hedman should be largely unaffected by this signing. Where it might get interesting is with the status of Ryan McDonagh. The Bolts will likely use a 4F-1D first-unit power play, which would likely mean a second unit of Mikhail Sergachev and Shattenkirk. McDonagh was bumped to the second-unit power play in favor of Shattenkirk with the Rangers when Shattenkirk was acquired in 2017-18, so Shattenkirk would likely bump McDonagh down the power-play pecking order again.
McDonagh scored a career-high 46 points with the Bolts in 2018-19 in spite of scoring just three power-play points with only 40 seconds of power-play icetime, so it’s understood that on the surface he may not have much to lose anyway. However, it’s worth mentioning that McDonagh scored 11 points in 11 games when Hedman was injured, but he scored just 35 points in 71 games when Hedman was in the lineup. Now with Shattenkirk signed, more than 40 points from McDonagh again seems like a reach since power-play time might be reduced to nothing on a team with a wealth of options.
Sergachev is probably affected more from an even-strength perspective. The Bolts may bump the left-handed shooting Sergachev up to the top 4 since has experience playing on both sides. But his defensive game is still a work in progress. It would be difficult to think that the up-and-coming Sergachev would lose power-play minutes here, but he might continue to be sheltered somewhat even-strength-wise since the Bolts now have more options on defense. Shattenkirk wasn’t counted on for tough minutes in 2018-19 with the Rangers, and it doesn’t seem he will for the Bolts either.
We’ve discussed earlier how Shattenkirk departing the Rangers (see #10) affects their blueline. To summarize, Tony DeAngelo and newly acquired Adam Fox should receive second-unit power-play minutes at a minimum. Jacob Trouba is now the guy there, so he should take on the heavy minutes and first-unit power-play time.
Fantasy players this helps, in order:
Fantasy players this hurts, in order:
Fantasy owners are now discussing the signing on the Forum – give your take here!