Mikhail Sergachev makes Tampa Bay Lightning Roster, For Now

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Mikhail Sergachev
TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 22: Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev (98) during the NHL preseason game between the Nashville Predators and Tampa Bay Lightning on September 22, 2017, at Amalie Arena in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire)

Mikhail Sergachev has made the Tampa Bay Lightning’s opening night roster. A top draft pick from the Montreal Canadiens, Sergachev was traded along with a conditional pick in the 2018 draft for Jonathan Drouin last summer.

Sergachev was drafted ninth overall in the 2017 draft. Last year he scored ten goals and 43 points for the Windsor Spitfires in 50 games, and helped the team to win the Memorial Cup.

Mikhail Sergachev makes Tampa Bay Roster, For Now

With Sergachev making the opening night roster and reportedly skating among the top 4, it is possible he will play more than 40 games this season. If so, the conditional draft picks which were a feature of the trade would be voided.

GM Steve Yzerman has said there’s no rush with the decision.

“It could be nine games, 10 games, 40 games,” Yzerman said.

As first reported by the Tampa Bay Times, the 19-year-old came to camp with the goal of making the team. He seemed nonetheless surprised to find out he would suit up to start the season on Friday against the Florida Panthers.

“It’s huge for me,” Sergachev said. “I don’t know what to say.”

“He deserves it,” captain Steven Stamkos said. “He’s gotten better as camp has gone on. It’s fun to see.”

Entry Level Contract Rules

Another key decision point will be Sergachev’s ninth NHL game. Sergachev, 19, is under the entry-level slide rule. If sent back to juniors before he plays 10 NHL games, his entry-level deal would slide and he would still have three years remaining on the deal. Once he plays his tenth game, the Lightning would use the first year of the contract. Last season, Sergachev played three games for the Canadiens in October, as well as a fourth game at the end of the regular season.

Sergachev appears to be starting the season on a pair with veteran defender Anton Stralman.

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images

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