The Tampa Bay Lightning have made it clear from the outset that they want to re-sign their star forward Steven Stamkos, but the soon to be free agent has all the power right now and Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman is stuck waiting for an answer.
He may not be willing to wait much longer however, Yzerman informed Lightning insider Joe Smith of The Tampa Bay Times that he is hopeful he will have an answer from Stamkos very soon.
And Yzerman is hoping to have some answers by this weekend.
It's hard to blame Yzerman for getting impatient, a great many decisions rest on whether or not the Lightning hand out a big money deal to Stamkos this summer, and Yzerman expressed as much to Smith.
"For us, we'd like to know sooner than later."
"At some point on other players, I have to make a decisions, whether it'd be restricted free agents, or potential trades or qualifying offers and things like that. I've got to make decisions and they can't be put off forever."
Also for the first time Yzerman seemed to resigned to the possibility that his star forward could leave, and that he is powerless to stop it.
"To be honest with you, it's out of my control," Yzerman said. "He's an unrestricted free agent on July 1. I can't force him to sign a contract with us if he doesn't want to. If he wants to go to July 1, he has that right."