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Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reported over the weekend the Lightning are believed to have offered Steven Stamkos an eight year extension worth $68 million ($8.5 AAV). There is no way Don Meehan and his group at Newport Sports are going to let Stamkos settle for anything under $10 million per season. Most continue to believe the two sides are headed towards a divorce. Where does Stamkos want to play? Lots of speculation continues to center around the Rangers as being a team to watch this summer. Barring a surprise development, the Lightning are expected to go for another Cup run and risk losing Stamkos for nothing.

— Blues GM Doug Armstrong put it out there on a platter through the media. Anything can happen with David Backes but for them to move him they’re seeking a win-now move (impact player or players in return) and not first round picks. “I guess you could always see it playing out any way,” Blues general manager Doug Armstrong told St. Louis Dispatch. “The least likely scenario would be to trade him because we’re trying to win. A first-round pick does us no good when we’re going to this year’s playoffs. I think we’re going to be a good team and he’s a big part of being a good team. He’s our captain, he’s our leader. We’ve had the most points in the NHL over the last five or six years. I mean, he’s doing something right. If we didn’t want to keep him, we wouldn’t have talked to him in the first place. We’ve got now until March to find out where we’re at.”

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William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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