Howden will get a chance to wear his Panther sweater for real next season. Photo Source:

Future Is Here For Howden

While the present for the Florida Panthers is pretty dismal, their future received some good news Wednesday. F Quinton Howden, drafted 25th overall in last year’s NHL Entry Draft, inked an entry level contract, making him the first of GM Dale Tallon’s 2010 draft class to sign with the club.

The 19-year old Oak Bank, Manitoba native is coming off an impressive season with the Moose Jaw Warriors of the Western Hockey League, where he scored 40 goals to go with 39 assists. The Warriors were recently knocked out of the WHL playoffs in the first round by the Kootenay Ice in six games. Howden added 5 goals and 2 assists in those playoffs.

Howden also made an impression at the World Junior Championships playing for Team Canada, where he scored 2 goals and 3 assists and a plus-6 rating.

As has been painfully evident once again this season, this team needs to get more talented and more physical up front. Bringing in a guy who is 6-2, 182 pounds, and is coming off the season he just had, certainly is a nice starting point. One would imagine Howden getting every opportunity to start the season with the big club as there just aren’t that many options signed right now.

In The Hockey News‘ Future Watch, the magazine rated him as the 61st top prospect in the NHL. Here is what Hockey’s Future has to say about him.

Welcome to Florida, Quinton! Please Help!! Please!!

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Tags: Dale Tallon Florida Panthers Kootenay Ice Moose Jaw Warriors Nhl Quinton Howden Team Canada The Hockey News Western Hockey League Whl World Junior Championships

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