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Report: Panthers' Ellerby signed to extension

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The South Florida Sun-Sentinel is reporting Florida Panthers defenseman Keaton Ellerby has been locked into a one-year - and more importantly, one-way - deal. Terms have not yet been released; the 22 year-old completed the final season of his entry level contract which carried a cap hit of $1.3M (all figures pe CapGeek). He was due for restricted free agency this summer.

This could be seen as a further audition for the 10th-overall selection in 2007, as a single year gives the club an easy out if a different direction is established for an evolving defensive core.

Ellerby's signing makes for a total of four blueliners under contract for the Panthers'  2011-12 season, joining Jason Garrison, Dmitry Kulikov, and Mike Weaver.