I'm not mourning
Thank you, Nikolai, for making up your mind, taking the money and running.... 4 years and 27 million dollars? Every TB contract gave you five years and relatively the same money.
What does this mean for the Lightning? It means they have moneyt o throw at Vincent Lecavalier without flinching now. It means the same for Dan Boyle and Martin St. Louis and the rest fo the teams RFA's. It means they can browse the market for a goaltender to tandem with John Grahame in net.
If Nik had been signed, money would have gotten much tighter, much faster and trading away one of Lecavalier, St. Louis or Boyle would have had to be a serious thought by the BOlts because there would be little room under the cap to keep all three around.
I'm not mourning. He was a hired assasin when he was brought in by Rick Dudley and he did his job between the pipes and raised the Lightning from the ashes to the champions of the NHL. Unlike his first year with the Lightning, he didn't carry this team to their goal in 2003-04. He was a passenger at more times than not with the defense making things easier for him.
Disagree if you like, but the fact of the matter is that the Lightning lucked out with Nik walking. There will still be more financial insanity (and the Lightning are yet to be players in that) before it's all said and done but this insanity just gave the Bolts more room to breath and more room to think.