Report: Lightning Made Big Decision on Jon Cooper


The Tampa Bay Lightning have bowed out of the Stanley Cup playoffs in the first round for the second straight year, leading to some speculation about the future of head coach Jon Cooper. His contract was supposedly due to expire after next season, but according to reports on Wednesday morning, he has, at some point, been quietly extended.

Bolts GM Julien BriseBois was asked about whether he intended to pursue an extension with Cooper, but merely responded, "No, he had term." This led to some investigative snooping, and David Pagnotta of the fourth Period is now reporting that Cooper had signed to a one-year extension that will take him through the 2025-26 season. There's no word on exactly when this took place.

Just completing his 11th season at the helm in Tampa Bay, Cooper is the longest-tenured head coach in the NHL. This season, he led the team to a  45-29-8 record for 98 points and a Wild Card berth, before bowing out to the defending Eastern Conference champs, the Florida Panthers. 

Overall, he has a 525-279-75 mark with the Lightning, a .640 winning percentage. In the playoffs, he's led the team to four conference championships and two Stanley Cups, with an 87-63 mark, a .580 winning percentage. They've missed the playoffs only once in his 11-year run.

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