The Panthers are sending Lawson Crouse back to Kingston (OHL).
Crouse was the 11th overall pick this summer and the Panthers announced in mid-September that he would be getting a nine-game NHL audition to start the season, but that’s not happening anymore. The winger is heading back to Kingston, where he had 51 points (29G / 22A) in 56 games last year.
Panthers rookie Lawson Crouse will be given a nine-game NHL ‘audition’ to start the season.
Crouse, 18, was selected 11th overall in this summer’s draft. The 6-foot-4, 215 lbs. winger tallied 29 goals and 22 assists (51 points) in 56 games with the Kingston Frontenacs (OHL) last season. Crouse has some competition to make the squad, but his size could prove to be a key factor in the Panthers decision. After the nine-game tryout, the Panthers will decide what is best for his future.
The Panthers have signed Jonathan Huberdeau to a two-year deal worth $6.5M ($3.25 AAV).
Huberdeau was an unrestricted free agent, but is now signed through the 2016-17 season. Huberdeau is coming off of a season in which he tallied 15 goals and 39 assists (54 points) in 79 games. He should lead the Panthers in points again in 2015-16.
The Panthers acquired Greg McKegg from the Maple Leafs for Zach Hyman and a conditional 7th round pick.
McKegg, 23, has not registered a point in four career NHL games with the Maple Leafs. The 2010 third round pick (62nd overall) had 22 goals and 15 assists (37 points) in 62 games with the Toronto Marlies (AHL) last season.
The Panthers re-signed Jaromir Jagr to a one-year contract extension on Sunday.
Jagr, 43, was acquired from New Jersey via trade on February 26th. In 20 games with the Panthers he tallied six goals and 12 assists (18 points). He looked much better in the Sunshine State than he did in New Jersey, so he will come back for his 21st NHL season in 2015-16.
Gudbranson (upper-body) will not play on Saturday.
Gudbranson was injured in the Panthers win over the Bruins on Thursday. He will be held out of the season finale and is expected to be replaced by Steven Kampfer. Gudbranson finishes the season with 13 points (4G / 9A), a minus-4 rating and 58 PIMS in 76 games.
Montoya will return to the Panthers crease on Saturday.
Montoya has been sidelined by a groin injury since March 3rd, but he will make one last start this season when he gets the nod tonight vs. the Devils. Montoya has had an OK season as the Panthers back-up, going 5-7-2 with a 3.08 GAA and .888 SV% in 12 starts. He has one more year on his contract and is expected to be back behind Roberto Luongo in 2015-16.
Montoya (groin) could be back in goal on Saturday.
Montoya went through another practice Tuesday and says he would like to play in Florida's season finale Saturday against the Devils as Coach Gallant said Roberto Luongo would play Thursday. "I'm feeling better every day,” said Montoya. “I just want to give the team a chance to win if I get in there. I would like to play, off course, but it's not up to me.''
Luongo allowed four goals on 22 shots in the Panthers loss to the Lightning on Saturday. He was given Sunday off, but he will be back between the pipes tonight looking to play spoiler against the Bruins. Bobby Lu has gone 1-1-1 with a 1.92 GAA and .926 SV% in his first three outings against Boston this season.
Luongo made 31 saves on 32 shots in the Panthers blowout win over the Hurricanes on Thursday. Tonight will be his third start against the Lightning this season. He is still search for his first win, having gone 0-1-1 with a 3.51 GAA and .877 SV% in the first two meetings. He has played well at home though, winning four of his last five.