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Report: Lightning working with McDonagh to find trade fit

Mark LoMoglio / National Hockey League / Getty

It's possible Ryan McDonagh has played his last game as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The team is working with the veteran defenseman to find a potential trade destination he'd accept, sources told Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman.

McDonagh, 33, has four years left on his contract with a $6.75-million cap hit and a full no-trade clause, per CapFriendly.

The Lightning are already $2 million over the salary cap and have multiple pending unrestricted free agents they'd reportedly like to keep, including forwards Ondrej Palat and Nick Paul.

Additionally, 24-year-old Mikhail Sergachev, who's currently third on Tampa Bay's left defense depth chart behind Victor Hedman and McDonagh, appears ready for a larger role. Sergachev will also be a restricted free agent after next season.

McDonagh's underlying numbers over the past three seasons aren't overly impressive, but he's still strong defensively.

The Wisconsin product also averaged 21:47 of ice time per game in the last three regular seasons and 23:10 during the Lightning's last three Stanley Cup Final runs. He recorded 26 points in 71 games in 2021-22.

McDonagh's teammates were apparently disappointed to hear of the possibility that he may be moving on.

The St. Paul, Minnesota, native came to Tampa Bay in 2018 in a trade from the New York Rangers, along with J.T. Miller, in exchange for a 2018 first-rounder, a conditional 2019 second-rounder, Libor Hajek, Brett Howden, and Vladislav Namestnikov.

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