Corey Perry declines Habs' offer, signs with the Lightning

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!


According to a report from ESPN NHL insider Kevin Weekes, veteran free agent forward Corey Perry is set to sign a two year contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Check it out:

Perry, of course, lost in the Stanley Cup Finals to the Lightning in back to back years with the Montreal Canadiens and Dallas Stars. You may have forgotten that Perry was a prominent member of the 2020 Stars roster that fell to the Lightning in the Cup Final, as well. So... I mean... can you really blame Perry if he signs with the Lightning? He just went through two gruelling seasons only to have his teeth kicked in by the Lightning in the Final.

Habs GM Marc Bergevin announced earlier this week that he had tabled a fair offer to Perry and was hopeful that he'd return for at least one more season, but Perry evidently was content to move on. And let's be honest, moving on when you have an offer from the best team in the league is a lot easier than moving on to sign with a bottom feeder. At this point in his career Perry has to be driven by winning. He's made a ton of money, he's won scoring championships, he's won MVP awards and he's played on both sides of the border. At this point he's just looking to add another Stanley Cup to go along with the one he won in his rookie season with the Anaheim Ducks back in 2007. And with the Lightning Perry will have every opportunity to hoist the Cup another time.

As for the Habs, they added forward Mike Hoffman yesterday in a move that now looks like it foreshadowed Perry leaving. While Hoffman and Perry are very differently style players, they can both play top six minutes and chip in on the powerplay. Between Hoffman and Tyler Toffoli the Habs have two solid options for the left side on the top powerplay unit. Then there's also Jonathan Drouin and Brendan Gallagher to consider. Don't be surprised if Gallagher and Josh Anderson take over some of the dirty work that Perry was tasked with this past season.