The Panthers’ final RFA of the off-season and one of the biggest names left in the league, left-winger Jonathan Huberdeau, has just signed a 2-year, $6.5 million deal with Panthers and will be under contract with the team through the 2016-17 season. Huberdeau was tendered a qualifying offer over two months ago and Panthers fans have been anxiously awaiting a new contract for the budding young forward to be made official.
The 3rd-overall pick in the 2011 Draft becomes the most recent young gun the Panthers have locked up to a long-term contract with Nick Bjugstad having agreed to a six-year, $24.6 million deal on December 31st, 2014. After winning the Calder Tophy as the league’s top rookie following the 2012 season and following that up with a sophomore slump during the 2013-14 season, Huberdeau had a bounceback year as he lead the Panthers in points with 54 and assists with 39. The Quebec-native had 21 points in the final 20 games of the season, including 5 multi-point games, as the Panthers made a strong push for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
It was reported two days ago by Harvey Fialkov of the Sun-Sentinel and Bob McKenzie of TSN that the Panthers offered a 2-year bridge deal to Huberdeau, however him and his agent were apparently “still mulling it over.” The Panthers released their 50-man roster for training camp which begins tomorrow and Huberdeau was not listed.
Huberdeau will also once again become a restricted free agent at the end of this new contract.