The Florida Panthers dipped into the NHL’s pool of unrestricted free agents and signed former Winnipeg Jets goaltender Michael Hutchinson to a one-year, one-way contract reportedly worth $1.3M on Sunday.
Hutchinson will take over Harri Sateri’s spot as the main man in Springfield and number one option if Roberto Luongo or James Reimer is injured.
The 28-year-old split the season between the Jets and their American Hockey League affiliate, the Manitoba Moose. The 6-foot-3, 202-pound native of Barrie, Ontario, appeared in three games with Winnipeg, and posted a 2-1-0 record, 3.26 goals against average and .907 save percentage.
Hutchinson, originally a third round pick of the Boston Bruins in 2008, has played in 102 career NHL games, all with Winnipeg, posting a 43-39-11 record, 2.65 goals against average, .910 save percentage and three shutouts. During the 2014-15 season, he helped the Jets make their first Stanley Cup appearance since moving to Manitoba in 2011-12, by producing a career-best 21-10-5 record, 2.38 goals against average, .914 save percentage and two shutouts.
While Sateri earned a lot of positive vibes from the fan base last season, I think this is an upgrade as Hutchinson has a lot more NHL experience and has the measurables you look for in a goalie.
The Panthers also took care of another one of its restrcited free agents by inking forward Jared McCann to a two-year, one way deal with an AAV of $874,125 according to CapFriendly.
The 22-year-old appeared in 68 games with Florida, producing career-highs in assists (19) and points (28), while tying his career-high in goals (9). McCann led the Panthers with a plus-11 rating and posted career-bests in game-winning goals (4), and shots (143), while averaging 13:15 TOI.
He has played in 166 NHL games with Florida (2016-17 to 2017-18) and Vancouver (2015-16), amassing a total of 53 points on 19 goals and 34 assists.
The Panthers still have to work out new deals for defensemen Alex Petrovic and MacKenzie Weegar.
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