With the start of free agency around the corner, starting on July 1st, FloridaPanthers.com looks at some of the top free agents at their prospective positions. After last summer's haul in Free Agency to help the team win their first Division title in franchise history, will the Panthers add any of the below players to help in their defense of the Southeast crown. (Rankings based off of CBSSports.com's Eye on Hockey staff)
|Winger Zach Parise has scored 30-plus goals five times in his career. |
Zach Parise (New Jersey Devils)
After an injury plagued season in 2010-2011, Zach Parise had a solid bounce back year in 2011-2012. He tallied 69 points, which was good enough for third on the team and also had 15 multi-point games for the Devils last season.
The biggest "fish" in the field from an offensive perspective, the Devils captain has stated that he wants to remain in New Jersey, but the Devils might not be able to keep him.
It will be interesting to see where he ends up.
Ray Whitney (Phoenix Coyotes)
The 40-year-old Whitney turned back the clock in 2011-2012 as he posted his best season in three years when he had the exact same number of points, assists, and goals. He totaled 77 points (53 assists and 24 goals) and also had a rating of plus-26.
Andrei Kostitsyn (Nashville Predators)
In his first season with the Nashville Predators, Andrei Kostitsyn totaled 36 points including 16 goals and 20 assists. He also contributed five power play and five game winners.
Dustin Penner (Los Angeles Kings)
Penner played in 65 games last season due to injury and only tallied 17 points. He had one of his worst seasons statistically during the regular season. Penner stepped it up in the playoffs as he recorded 11 points (eight assists) in 20 games for the Stanley Cup Champion LA Kings.
The Kings want to bring him back.
Ryan Smith (Edmonton Oilers)
Smyth had a pretty productive season for the Edmonton Oilers last season. He had 46 points including 19 goals and 27 assists. This may seem great, but keep in mind that 24 points came in the first 22 games. Smyth tailed off towards the end of the season, but you can’t take away what he accomplished as he has scored 20-plus goals 11 times during his career.