Steven Stamkos has reportedly agreed to an eight-year deal to stay with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The contract, first reported by TSN and confirmed by ESPN, carries a $8.5 million AAV.
The Islanders were rumored to a dark horse as a potential landing spot for Stamkos if he reached free agency.
Right after the news broke, our own Brian Compton tweeted that he heard the Isles' interest in Stamkos was legitimate, and it sure seemed that way from reading the tea leaves. But it's obviously that Stamkos was happy where he was, and wants to see things through with the Lightning.
Now that Stamkos is off the board, and Taylor Hall is going to the Devils for Adam Larsson, it's full blown panic among Isles fans. And frankly, I'm sort of starting to worry, too. Where do the Isles turn from here for an impact offseason? Re-sign Frans and go hard after Andrew Ladd? Many would consider that a lateral move. Can the Isles find a taker for one of their d-men and upgrade their offense that way? I suppose, but that may prove harder than it seems, because Garth isn't parting with Ryan Pulock, Travis Hamonic, or Nick Leddy, and after Johnny Boychuk's struggled this season, his value has never been lower.
Garth is going to have his work cut out for him. Friday can't come soon enough…