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Panthers acquire franchise player Tyler Seguin

2019-07-07

Who says you can't have your cake and eat it too?

Florida Panthers General Manager Jeff Kuntz had previously disclosed that he was looking at two separate possibilities when it came to trading the sixth over-all selection in the 2019 EHE draft: Get a Top 6 forward, or move it for 2020 picks.

As it turned out, Kuntz swung a larger deal with the New York Rangers to accomplish both goals at once.

The Panthers acquired All-Star center Tyler Seguin, San Jose's 2020 first round pick, Columbus' 2020 second round pick, and Chicago's 2019 first round pick in exchange for Noah Hanifin, Frans Neilsen, Vladimir Sobotka, top prospect Evan Bouchard, Florida's first, second and third round picks in 2019 as well as Dallas' first in 2019.

A rival GM who shall not be named (it was Thomas Gidlow) publicly blasted the deal on the league's Slack channel, saying “You're not going to win with one player.”

Gidlow added: “What an odd trade.”

The first of several that will likely be head-scratchers for Gidlow as he witnesses the kind of moves needed to build a team that can actually win.

The Panthers are reportedly looking to deal the Chicago 2019 first for a 2020 first. That would give the team 3 first round and 3 second round picks in the 2020 draft heading in to the 2019-20 season. If Mark Stone is offer-sheeted and the Panthers don't match, it'll be 4 and 4.

Kuntz agrees with Gidlow that the Florida Panthers would not win with one player. Fortunately for Panthers fans, the team currently has a Top-6 of:

???? - Seguin – Stone
Keller – Domi – Lindholm

Another scenario could see Domi on the first line at LW, and the team needing only a second line LW or C to round out their Top-6. Head coach Jack Capuano won't know until he re-evaluates Domi.

Kuntz feels that the team can manage the departure of Frans Neilsen by placing Casey Cizikas on the third line, with Victor Rask at fourth line center, stating, “We feel Casey has grown as a player and will fill the role of third-line center perfectly.”

As for replacing Hanifin, Kuntz was less optimistic.

“We don't have anyone in-house at the moment that can step in. But we've got picks and prospects, and tons of cap space. I told you I'd get us a top-6 forward and we got a franchise player. Now I'm telling you I'll replace that top-4 defenseman,” said Kuntz, who noted that Hanifin would have been an obvious expansion draft target and he would have had to trade him at some point anyway.

Kuntz said he'll replace Hanifin with someone who has more experience. (He means older, and less valuable.)

The Panthers GM also seemed have changed his tune about a potential offer-sheet.

“We just might have to test the skills of that new guy over there in Boston. He's got a certain star center who's an RFA that would look good in a Panthers uni,” said Kuntz, likely referring to Jack Eichel.

“The Rangers have a guy, too, that we'd be interested in,” Kuntz said, likely speaking about Dylan Larkin.

Florida cleared out some cap space in the Seguin trade, so it is possible the extra room could be used to fend off or even initiate so-called “poison pill” RFA offer-sheets.

The Panthers essentially sacrificed their 2019 season so they could contend in 2020. The addition of Tyler Seguin and the 2020 picks certainly help that cause, but only time will tell if the strategy is successful.




Adam O'Blenes

I think it was a nice trade for both teams. As for Eichel...let's see what happens. lol

Panthers acquire franchise player Tyler Seguin
Hanifin, Nielsen Sobotka and futures dealt to Rangers

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