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Saturday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Open Forum

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Development Camp ends; NHL Free Agency opens tomorrow

USHL Fall Classic - Day 2 Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The Florida Panthers concluded its annual Development Camp yesterday with a 50-minute scrimmage that saw Team Red blank Team Blue (wearing white jerseys) by a 2-0 count. Gustaf Westlund and Joseph Gareffa scored the goals and Evan Cormier and Ryan Bednard combined on the shutout. Samuel Montembeault and Chris Mattone each gave up a goal for Team Blue.

Westlund goal

Gareffa goal

The two sides also went through a five-round shootout with Red’s Logan Hutsko scoring the only goal.

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NHL Free Agency opens tomorrow at 12 p.m. The Cats might be looking for a defenseman or perhaps another forward, but I wouldn’t expect any big moves from the club as they already are carrying a salary cap number that is just over the $72M mark.

The Panthers still have four restricted free agents, Jared McCann, Alex Petrovic, McKenzie Weegar and Curtis Valk, to sign, although Valk is expected to head to the KHL.

Former Panthers property who are hitting unrestricted free agency are Harri Sateri, Connor Brickley, Ed Wittchow, Chase Balisy, Chase Gregory and Alexandre Grenier. It will be interesting to see if Florida will bring back Sateri or go in a different direction for its third string goaltender.

Litter Box Nuggets (Five For Reading)

  • The Los Angeles Kings signed cornerstone defenseman Drew Doughty to an eight-year extension that will keep him in La La Land until 2027. (Jewels From The Crown)
  • Washington Capitals associate coach Todd Reirden was named the 18th head coach, replacing Barry Trotz, in franchise history on Friday. (Japers’ Rink)
  • Forward Rick Nash, who would have been a desirable free agent target for quite a few teams, might take the year off or retire. (ESPN)
  • Several of the six teams courting John Tavares also have offers ready for 36-goal-scorer James van Riemsdyk, which has seemingly put van Riemsdyk in a bit of a holding pattern. (TSN)
  • Hockey by Design breaks down the new third jersey offerings from the Carolina Hurricanes and Arizona Coyotes. They were not impressed. (hockeybydesign)