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“If You Can’t Beat Them, Join Them.”

(Photo by Dave Sandford/NHL via Getty Images)

By Kirsten Schneider

On July 29, 2021, the Tampa Bay Lightning made a huge move by signing RW Corey Perry to a two-year, $2 million contract. This news surprised Bolts fans, with some loving the move and some seeing Perry as a name that shouldn’t be anywhere near a Bolts sweater. Was this a good move for the Lightning?

In the 2020-2021 season, Perry played in 49 of a possible 56 games and put up 9 goals, 12 assists, and 21 points. In his 22 games during the 2020-2021 playoffs, Perry had 4 goals, 6 assists, and 10 points. These stats really don’t do Corey Perry any justice, as he brings a very physical upbringing to the team, which the Lightning are in need, of after losing so many key players this offseason.

Corey Perry and the Lightning have quite a rough past, to say the least. In the 2020 Stanley Cup Finals, Perry, now a member of Stars, looked to capture his second Stanley Cup. Lightning fans complained he played quite dirty on the ice. Unfortunately for him, playing dirty didn’t win him the cup that year.

In the 2021 Stanley Cup Finals, Corey Perry and the Lightning meet again, now with Perry as a member of the Montreal Canadiens. Perry didn’t play *as* dirty in this Finals’ run, but enough to anger Andrei Vasilevskiy. In Game 4, Perry and a bunch of other Habs’ players crowded Vasy’s net, which prompted Vasilevskiy to punch Perry in the face.

Clip of Vasilevskiy punching Perry in the face:

Switching teams just didn’t do it for Corey Perry, because the Lightning were able to stop him in back-to-back finals. As we often hear, “if you can’t beat them, join them”. Rumors were that the Canadiens already had given Perry an offer, but Perry was the one driving negotiations to join the Lightning. The prevailing thought was that the Lightning had no cap space to afford anyone of value, so there’s no way they can sign Perry. The Lightning gave him $250,000 more than the Habs paid him. More money always sways the player, and Perry’s preexisting interest made this the perfect location for him.

I think he will be a great fit with the players we currently have. After losing Tyler Johnson, Yanni Gourde, Blake Coleman, and Barclay Goodrow, the Lightning found someone in Perry with tons of playoff experience and a hard-nosed style of play. After losing many of our key players, this was a smart move by the Bolts.

Let us know what you think about the Corey Perry Signing in the comments below.

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