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Panthers' Gudbranson agrees on new contract

Defenseman had nine points in 64 games for Atlantic Division champs

by @NHL

Defenseman Erik Gudbranson and the Florida Panthers agreed to terms on a one-year contract, general manager Dale Tallon announced Monday.

Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed. Gudbranson could have become a restricted free agent July 1.

"We are very pleased to have signed Erik," Tallon said in a statement. "He is an important part of our young core, who has continued to develop into a reliable, physical presence on our blue line and a strong leader in our locker room."

Gudbranson, 24, had two goals and seven assists in 64 games during the regular season to help the Panthers (47-26-9) to the Atlantic Division title. He played in all six of their games in the Stanley Cup Playoffs; Florida was eliminated by the New York Islanders in the Eastern Conference First Round. 

The 6-foot-5, 216-pound native of Ottawa was selected by Florida in the first round (No. 3) of the 2010 NHL Draft, and has 43 points and 346 penalty minutes in 309 career games with the Panthers.

"I'm very excited for another year with the Panthers," Gudbranson said. "We took great strides last season as a team, and our group can only improve upon the success we had. It's a great time for the organization, and I look forward to getting back on the ice with the team."

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