The Florida Panthers have signed their top draft pick Aleksander Barkov to a three year, two way entry level contract. The 17 year old had surgery on his right shoulder this offseason but he is expected to be ready when the season starts.
According to Capgeek.com, the three year contract is valued at $10.725 million. The two way contract pays $925,000 per year at the NHL level and only $70,000 if Barkov is assigned to the AHL. The deal includes $2.65 million in possible performance bonuses each season and the salary cap hit is $3.575 million a year.
Barkov on signing with the Panthers said, “I am very excited about signing my first NHL contract with Florida. I enjoyed meeting with the Panthers coaches, my future teammates and our fans at development camp last week. I will continue to train hard and look forward to competing for a spot on the team when training camp opens in September.”
Barkov’s deal is almost identical to the one signed by Jonathan Huberdeau. Each is a two way deal that pays $925,000 per year at the NHL level with lots of possible performance bonuses. The only difference is Huberdeau’s performance bonuses top out at $2.3 mill compared to Barkov’s $2.65 million.
It is a relief that the Panthers got a deal done in such a timely manner as now both sides can focus on the upcoming season. The Panthers’ are certainly a cost conscious team and there is always present the fear that a young player like Barkov could demand more than the Panthers would be willing to commit. This happened already this year with prospect Corban Knight, who the Panthers ended up dealing, so it is nice to see the team lock up one of their top talents.
The Panthers were not done today as they also signed young goaltender Jacob Markstrom to a two year deal. Details of the deal were not immediately available.