TAMPA, FL (WFLA) – Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos is in the spotlight again after stirring up controversy with his social media activity.
TSN Sports, a dominant source of hockey news, posted a tweet asking followers if the Toronto Maple Leafs should pursue Stamkos in free agency. Stamkos “liked” the tweet, making it the only “like” on his official Twitter account.
“I’m sure lots of people have been in similar situations in which they’ve done things accidentally,” explained Stamkos after practice Thursday. “it probably doesn’t look great, but I’m telling you guys that it was an accident, and hopefully it’s the last time I have to answer a question about Twitter.”
Stamkos is an Ontario-native, and his desire to return to play in Canada (particularly the Maple Leafs) has been a long-standing rumor. His current contract expires July 1, and barring an extension he will become the most-prized free agent in years.
Negotiations regarding an extension with the Lightning have been kept quiet through this season, and head coach Jon Cooper maintains the contract status of his captain is a non-issue on the ice.
“I’ll be honest,” detailed Cooper. “When we’re out there working on our 5-on-3, it’s not like we’re doing this little play and then (Tyler Johnson) is saying: ‘Hey Stammer, what’s up with your contract?'”
“That doesn’t go on,” he continued. “That never goes on in our locker room or any thing like that. It’s not one of our plays. Whatever happens outside and in the media, that’s for you guys to assume or speculate.