Friday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Offseason Open Forum

Sonk! First buyout window is now open

Now that 24 hours have elapsed since Gary Bettman handed out the Stanley Cup, NHL teams can buy out players, for whatever reason they see fit. The buyout window is open until 5 p.m. mountain on July 27, one day before the opening of the annual free agent frenzy period.

The Florida Panthers have two players that are risk of a buyout, defensemen Keith Yandle and Anton Stralman.

Yandle has two years remaining on his contract that carries an average annual value of $6.35 million dollars.

The Cats can save almost $5 million total against the cap over the next two seasons (most of it in the upcoming season), while pocketing almost $2.5 million in real dollar savings in the process.

Yandle‘s cap hit after a buyout would look like this:

2021-22: $2,341,667

2022-23: $5,391,667

2023-24: $1,241,667

2024-25: $1,241,667

Stralman is in the final year of a three-year contract that carries a $5.5 million cap hit. A buyout of the final year of his deal come at the cost of $1.5 million of cap space over the next two seasons.

I doubt the Panthers will buy out both blueliners, but I think there is a good chance one of them will be jettisoned via this method. If they could buyout one and trade the other, the cap and roster space would be available to seriously upgrade the team’s defense corps.

One question for each NHL team heading into a short off-season

Sportsnet’s Rory Boylen has an article up asking one question of each of the NHL’s now 32 teams. Here’s the portion on the Panthers.

Florida Panthers: Does GM Bill Zito have a big move in him?

Zito had big-play potential at the trade deadline and then got Sam Bennett who was terrific down the stretch until he received a playoff suspension. Still, something even bigger could be in the cards. Only Sergei Bobrovsky and Aaron Ekblad are under contract beyond the 2022-23 season. Aleksander Barkov will be entering the final season of his deal and will need to be extended quickly or, perhaps, a trade will have to be explored. But after the season they just had, ended in an exciting six-game series against Tampa Bay in which they played the defending champs very well, the Panthers have to be thinking about an all-in approach to 2021-22. They have $13 million in cap space with 11 forwards, six defensemen and two goalies, and decisions on RFAs Bennett and Anthony Duclair pending. The time to move is now, before some key players will be in position for big raises — what can Zito pull off?

You can see the entire article by clicking here.


The Toronto Maple Leafs inked defenseman Travis Dermott to a two-year contract extension. The AAV of his new deal is worth $1.5 million. Dermott appeared in 51 games with the Maple Leafs during the 2020-21 season, recording two goals  and six points. (Pension Plan Puppets)

Beck Malenstyn signed a one-year, two-way contract extension to remain with the Washington Capitals organization. The 23-year-old forward produced 15 points in 46 games with the Hershey Bears, and appeared in his first three NHL games with the Capitals this past season. (Russian Machine Never Breaks)

LBC Poll

Should the Panthers trade for Vladimir Tarasenko?