Lightning sign Morrow to one-year deal
The Tampa Bay Lightning have boatloads of young offensive skill in their forward group, highlighted by former 60-goal scorer Steven Stamkos, Calder Trophy nominees Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat, not to mention top prospect Jonathan Drouin, who is expected to join Tampa Bay after his second consecutive 100+ point season in the juniors.
And now, they’ve added a little more grit and veteran leadership by signing left wing Brenden Morrow to a one-year deal. Morrow, former captain of the Dallas Stars, has bounced between Dallas, Pittsburgh (where he was traded to at the 2013 deadline), and St.Louis (one-year deal with them last year) the past few seasons. He’s no longer the kind of player who can put up 20-30 goals in a season, but he plays an aggressive, hard-checking style at all ends of the rink, and at 35 years of age with 14 NHL seasons under his belt, he can provide a strong mentoring presence to an exceedingly young Lightning squad.
Defenseman Eric Brewer and center Valtteri Filppula are the only other Lightning players currently aged 30 years or more.
Morrow’s contract is for one year, at the price of $1.55 million. Over the course of his aforementioned 14 seasons in the NHL, he’s amassed 921 games played, 262 goals, 305 assists, 567 total points, 1,298 penalty minutes and a career plus/minus rating of +108. He also has 46 points (19 goals, 27 assists) in 94 career postseason games. He hasn’t won a Stanley Cup, though he came close in his rookie year, as he was part of the 1999-2000 Stars team that fell to the New Jersey Devils in a six-game Stanley Cup final.
Morrow has seven career 20+ goal seasons, and two 30+ goal seasons. His check-happy style of play has led to some durability issues, however- he’s only ever played all 82 regular season games twice in his career, and hasn’t reached that mark since 2010-11.
Fun fact: if the Lightning wanted to, they could put together a “captains line”, featuring Morrow, Stamkos (current Tampa Bay captain) and right wing Ryan Callahan, who used to wear the “C” for the New York Rangers before being traded last season.