St. Petersburg Times Online: Sports
TampaBay.com
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
tampabay.com

printer version

Lapointe would consider signing with Lightning

So says the agent for Red Wings forward Martin Lapointe, a likely unrestricted free agent.

By DAMIAN CRISTODERO

© St. Petersburg Times, published May 3, 2001


The agent for potential unrestricted free agent Martin Lapointe said this week that the Red Wings forward, who is coming off a career season, seriously would consider playing for the Lightning.

Gilles Lupien said Tampa Bay is "one or two players" from being a playoff contender, and that Lapointe, a right wing, would relish playing with centers Vinny Lecavalier and Brad Richards.

Another big plus: Florida has no state income tax.

"First of all, he doesn't hate Detroit, but I think he's ready to move to some other team if he has to," Lupien said from his office in Rosemere, Quebec. "I think Tampa would be a nice place for him to play, especially with Lecavalier and those guys."

Lupien might simply be trying to enhance his negotiating leverage with Detroit, which has said signing Lapointe is a priority. But Lupien insisted the Lightning could be in the mix.

"For sure," he said. "I don't see why not."

Lapointe, 27, would give the Lightning some much-needed grit and scoring punch, and he has the toughness general manager Rick Dudley covets.

The 5-foot-11, 208-pounder was Detroit's third-leading goal scorer, with 27, and was fourth on the team with 57 points. He also has a mean streak that earned a team-high 127 penalty minutes.

Lapointe has said he enjoys playing in Detroit, but Lupien said to keep those statements in context.

"His options are wide open and, for him, it's important to see what is out there. It's not always a question of money," he said.

Lapointe made a bargain-basement $1.25-million last season. He is expected to ask for between $3-million and $4-million.

That seems an unlikely amount for Tampa Bay to absorb, especially considering the $3.5-million it will pay goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin and the contract to be negotiated with Lecavalier.

But Lupien certainly left the door open, even if it is, ultimately, just a crack.

"I think the player wants to be on a winning team in the future," Lupien said of Lapointe. "I think Tampa has a better future than some other teams, in my book, and they are young and they have the type of players that want to win. And everyone who knows Martin Lapointe knows he's a winner."

DRULIA ON NICKELODEON: Lightning forward Stan Drulia will host a two-hour block of Nick Gas on Nickelodeon at 5 p.m. today. The show focuses on games and sports for kids.

Back to Sports
Back to Top

© 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
Contact the Times | Privacy Policy
Standard of Accuracy | Terms, Conditions & Copyright
 

From the Times sports desk

Hubert Mizell
  • Hungry to ride

  • Rays
  • Rays get a win to build on
  • Rays catch the eye of Alabama bank chairman
  • McHale deal still several days away

  • Lightning
  • Lapointe would consider signing with Lightning

  • Sports Etc.
  • Point Given to start outside
  • Derby notebook
  • NL notebook
  • AL notebook
  • NHL notebook
  • NBA notebook
  • ThunderDawgs not leaving yet
  • Winters fighting for her USF job
  • Area powers to face off in rematch
  • NFL briefs
  • Gugelmin has praise for HANS
  • Magic hopes to build on season's success
  • Winds help, then hinder racers
  • Training camp opens overflowing with talent
  • Alonso hires NFL assistant as its first coach
  • Buc star has chance to set state records
  • SPJC looks to break through
  • Unlikely teams set to face off in region semis
  • Rebel has recovered very nicely
  • Captain's corner
  • Hot, humid and empty


  • From the wire

    From the state sports wire
  • Jacksonville's Spicer placed on IR after leg surgery
  • FIU-Western Kentucky game postponed because of Jeanne
  • Brown anxious to face old team for first time
  • Dolphins' desperate defense readies for Roethlisberger
  • Former Sarasota lineman sheds tough-guy image with Michigan
  • Rothstein rejoins Heat as assistant
  • No. 16 Florida has history on its side against Kentucky
  • FSU and Clemson QBs both off to slow starts