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free agency

Lightning teammates cheer Victor Hedman's extension

Tampa Bay defenseman was entering final year of contract

by Pat Pickens @Pat_Pickens / NHL.com Staff Writer

The Tampa Bay Lightning crashed the NHL's free agent frenzy Friday by signing defenseman Victor Hedman to an eight-year, $63 million contract extension.

Tweet from @heds77: Couldn't be more excited to stay in Tampa for another 8 years! Let's do this..

Lightning forwards Ryan Callahan and Brian Boyle took to Twitter to cheer Hedman's extension.

Tweet from @BriBrows22: More excellent news! https://t.co/6lhVrR1j9L

Tweet from @TheRealCally24: The big swede!!! ������������ https://t.co/7pYGycuDKh

Tweet from @TheRealCally24: @heds77 Arbys?!?!?

Tweet from @BriBrows22: So much free Arby's next year cal https://t.co/SFgiHtCn0B

Defenseman Jason Garrison also expressed excitement over Hedman's return.

Tweet from @J_G_5: ������������������ https://t.co/3JYTfDXVK2

Hedman, the No. 2 pick by the Lightning in the 2009 NHL Draft, was set to enter the final season of a five-year, $20 million contract and could have become an unrestricted free agent July 1, 2017.

His extension comes two days after captain Steven Stamkos signed an eight-year contract to remain with Tampa Bay.

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