Agent explains why Brayden Point signed bridge deal with Lightning

Tim and Sid react to Brayden Point’s new deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning and how it compares to other RFAs.

Brayden Point was one of many dynamic young forwards looking for a big raise after his entry-level contract, but his agent says the other restricted free agents didn’t influence negotiations with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

“In our business you keep an eye on the market, obviously it’s important, but at the end of my only job is to do the right deal for Brayden Point,” Gerry Johannson said on the Fan 590’s Good Show on Tuesday.

Point, 23, signed a three-year, $20.75-million bridge deal with a $6.75 million cap hit Monday. Johannson said Point’s desire to stay in Tampa and the culture of the team, were bigger factors in the negotiation than other comparable contracts signed around the league.

“There’s a couple of dimensions to these negotiations. One is obviously your player and their expectations, their comfort zone and what their goals are. But a big one is the club and what have teams done in the past,” Johannson said.

“Teams like Tampa have been very successful with a certain structure. They do pay their guys but the bridge deal has been something they’ve done with pretty much every one of their top players. So I think going into it, we were prepared to go down that road.”

While Point and some of the other RFAs have been able to get deals done, there are still some that remain unsigned, including Matthew Tkachuk of the Calgary Flames, as well as Patrik Laine and Kyle Connor of the Winnipeg Jets.

While Johannson says he didn’t look to other players for comparable contracts, he added he wouldn’t be surprised if more players follow Point’s lead with a shorter-term deal.

“I think now shorter term can make a lot of sense,” Johannson said.

“and I think with Brayden we found the right term for him and the team.”

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