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Tampa Bay Lightning sign Tyler Motte to one-year contract

Julien BriseBois. Screenshot courtesy of the Tampa Bay Lightning via their website.

Shortly after the news that they were placing Josh Archibald on unconditional waivers for the purpose of terminating his contract, the Tampa Bay Lightning announced that they had signed Tyler Motte to a one-year deal worth $800,000.

Motte, who has been acquired by the New York Rangers during the last two trade deadline months, will likely slot onto the fourth line and kill some penalties. In short, he will fill the same role that was planned for Archibald, but will likely go about it in a more physical manner.

The 28-year-old started the season with the Ottawa Senators last year, signing a one-year deal on September 14th, and got off to a horrible start. In 38 games he scored just once on 57 shots at 5v5 for a shooting percentage of just 1.75%. He missed 15 games from the end of December to the end of January with a broken finger and struggled to produce offense following his return. Despite the lack of offense, the Rangers traded for him on February 19th, sending Julien Gauthier and a conditional seventh-round pick to Ottawa for his services.

Motte settled in with his new (old) team and found his scoring touch again with five goals and five assists in 24 games, not bad for a bottom-six forward. Despite the lack of scoring the former Chicago Blackhawks draft pick also showed his physical nature as he threw 116 hits at 5v5 between the Senators and the Rangers. His signing fits the mold of general manager Julien BriseBois’ offseason plan as he is solid defensively and an aggressive forechecker. According to All Three Zones, he posted 8.99 forecheck pressures per 60 minutes with Ottawa last season, a number that would have placed second on the Lightning last season with only Brandon Hagel’s 10.33 FP/60 being higher (Archibald was at 8.12 with the Penguins last year).

It’s a solid signing with the short notice provided by Archibald’s decision to not play next year. Don’t expect a lot of offense, but Motte should be okay defensively and provide a lot of energy on the fourth line.

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