Ondrej Palat is the last remaining RFA in Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. — Tyler Johnson is staying with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The free-agent forward signed a new seven-year, $35 million deal to remain with the Lightning, General Manager Steve Yzerman announced Monday. This comes in the wake the team and Johnson announcing an arbitration meeting come July 20th.

The 26-year-old Johnson had 19 goals and 26 assists in 66 games last season. He was tied for third on the Lightning in goals and power-play goals (six), and fifth with 45 points.

Overall, Johnson has totalled 89 goals, 122 assists and 102 penalty minutes in 308 career games over five seasons, all with Tampa Bay. He also has 21 goals and 21 assists in 47 career playoff games.

Prior to this signing the Lightning had $13.68 million in available cap space, enough to sign both players. Now with around 9 million being allocated after Johnsons extension. Most projections have Palat coming in annually around 5 million per season due to his prior performances. Many analysts stated that Palat should have been strategically signed first, as he has more consistent seasons on the Bolts.

Ondrej Palat has played 307 games in a Lightning uniform, scoring 74 goals and notching 144 assists.

Palat’s current arbitration meeting is set for July 25th 2017.

What can be noted is that Johnson’s signing can’t be used to leverage Palat to a lesser amount. Cap Room, and a player of a comparable caliber do not affect the results of the arbitration.

For a full explanation of the rules and list of players filing for arbitration click here.

The evidence that can be used in arbitration cases:

  • The player’s “overall performance” including statistics in all previous seasons.
  • Injuries, illnesses and the number of games played.
  • The player’s length of service with the team and in the NHL.
  • The player’s “overall contribution” to the team’s success or failure.
  • The player’s “special qualities of leadership or public appeal.”
  • The performance and salary of any player alleged to be “comparable” to the player in the dispute.

Evidence that is not admissible:

  • The salary and performance of a “comparable” player who signed a contract as an unrestricted free agent. Essentially, another teams decisions do not impact the arbitration.
  • Testimonials, video and media reports. As there is location bias and hype generation.
  • The financial state of the team.
  • The salary cap and the state of the team’s payroll.
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