Kraken Expansion Draft - Florida Panthers
Hey Tentaclan. Hope you're all having a great Tuesday so far. For my American friends and readers I wish you a happy election day and encourage all of you to vote and make your voice heard. That's about as political as I will ever get here.
Apologies for not posting a Panthers Expansion List yesterday. A friendly reminder that if you have told me you can submit a list, please actually submit your list. I will be checking in with all those who have volunteered over the next few days to ensure you are still interested.
Luckily once again my good friend John Schmalocknee is here to submit a list for the Florida Panthers.
FLORIDA PANTHERS EXPANSION LIST
Jonathan Huberdeau (NMC) - LW
Aleksander Barkov - C
Brett Connolly - RW
Frank Vatrano - RW
Alexander Wennberg - C
Noel Acciari - RW
Aleksi Saarela - C
Aaron Ekblad - RD
Keith Yandle (NMC) - LD
Anton Stralman - RD
Sergei Bobrovsky (NMC)
Overall this was a fairly straight-forward list to come up with. The obvious like Huberdeau, Barkov, and Ekblad are easy protect names. Cycling through the forward core most of the names were obvious selections but the one name that might stand out is forward Aleksi Saarela. The 23 year old centre put up 31 points in 43 games last season for the AHL Thunderbirds and put up 4 points in 9 games for the Panthers. Currently Saarela has 8 goals in 11 games for Lukko Rauma of the SM-liiga this year.
Thanks for that John!
Looking at the available names a few certainly stand out. Let's take a closer look.
Carter Verhaeghe: The 25 year old put up 13 points in 52 games playing for the Tampa Bay Lightning in his NHL rookie season. Not the most impressive, considering the players surrounding him but he is young enough to still perform better.
Patric Hornqvist: The 33 year old still has something left in the tank, putting up 32 points in 52 games last season for the Pens. This year he will likely end up playing a fair amount with Barkov.
Markus Nutivaara: Averaged just over 15 minutes a game last season for the Blue Jackets on defense. Injuries took him out for more than half of last season but at 26 years old should not be overlooked.
Radko Gudas: The 6' 204lb defender will likely get some solid opportunities in the Panthers top 4 this season. A solid two way defender who plays smart in his own end.\
Hornqvist is my James Neal selection that the Vegas Golden Knights made. An older vet still more than capable of playing in the top six, with a style of game that shouldn't' falter too much over the next couple of seasons. Seattle will need a combination of both exciting younger players to grow into roles as well as veterans who can produce and help these players through the highs and lows.