|Panthers draft pick Filip Kuba returns to franchise with two year deal after playing most recently in Ottawa (Getty Images)
Florida Panthers Executive VP & General Manager Dale Tallon announced today that the club has agreed to terms with D Filip Kuba (FIHL-ihp KOO-bah) on a two-year contract.
“Filip is an experienced player who adds further depth to our blue line,” said Tallon. “He is a big, strong and responsible, shutdown defenseman who averaged more than 23 minutes of ice time per-game last season. We are confident that he will fit very well into our top six and help our power play. We look forward to his contributions to our team.”
Kuba, 35, has played in 792 National Hockey League contests for Florida (1998-2000), Minnesota (2000-2006), Tampa Bay (2006-2008) and Ottawa (2008-2012), totaling 69 goals with 254 assists and 337 PIM. Kuba played the majority of the 2011-12 season alongside Norris Trophy winner Erik Karlsson, recording 32 points (6-26-32) and a team-best +26 rating in 73 games played. He also paced the club with 149 blocked shots and ranked second on the Sens in ice time (23:36).
The 6-foot-4, 225-pound defenseman posted a career-best 40 points (3-37-40) while playing with the Senators during the 2008-2009 campaign. Throughout his 12-year playing career, he has recorded at least 30 points five times and notched at least 20 points in 10 of his last 11 seasons played.
The Ostrava, Czech Republic native set an NHL and team record by recording an assist in eight consecutive games to start the 2008-2009 season while playing for the Senators. Kuba was selected to play in the 2004 NHL All-Star game and represented his native country at the Winter Olympics in both 2006 and 2010.
Kuba was originally drafted by Florida in the eighth round (192nd overall) in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft.
The Panthers are set to open the 2012-13 season Oct. 13 against the Tampa Bay Lightning and will raise a Southeast Division Championship banner in a pre-game ceremony. Select lower-bowl season tickets are available for as low as $30 now by calling 954-835-PUCK or clicking to FloridaPanthers.com and single-game tickets will be on sale later this summer.
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