The Tampa Bay Lightning have ensured they will have the money to spare on Brayden Point‘s next contract.
Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois offloaded forward Ryan Callahan‘s contract on Tuesday, shedding $5.8 million in cap space along with it in a deal with the Ottawa Senators.
In exchange for taking on the final year of Callahan’s deal, Ottawa gets a fifth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. The Senators, meanwhile, send goalie Mike Condon and a sixth-round pick in 2020 to Tampa.
Callahan will not play for the Senators after a career-ending degenerative back disease was discovered this past season. That means that insurance will pick up 80% of the salary ($3.76 million) and Ottawa will only be responsible for $940,000 of it.
BriseBois was optimistic on Monday, saying a deal with Point will likely get done prior to the opening of training camp.
That seems increasingly accurate now that Callahan is off the books. The Lightning could have placed him on long-term injury reserve themselves, allowing them to go over the cap by his $5.8 million cap hit.
They also have four goalies on their roster, with Condon, Andrei Vasilevsky, Curtis McElhinney, and Louis Domingue. Condon or Domingue will be a surplus to requirements. Condon carries a $2.4 million cap hit next season while Domingue is at $1.15 million.
If buried, CapFriendly says Condon’s cap hit would drop to $1.325 million.
Either way, the Lightning now have room for both their RFAs without much worry.