The Florida Panthers already have a great collection of talent up front with Aleksander Barkov, Jonathan Huberdeau, and Evgenii Dadonov. The trio put up 258 points last season. Adding a point-per-game player like Artemi Panarin would make them one of the better forward cores in the league.
With that kind of support, Panarin could easily become a 90 to 100 point player.
Over the offseason, the Panthers added Panarin’s former coach in Chicago, Joel Quenneville. Under coach Q, Panarin put up back-to-back 30 goal seasons and won the Calder Trophy in Chicago. Having a familiar face behind the bench could certainly help Panarin feel more comfortable.
Speaking of familiar faces, teammate Sergei Bobrovsky could also join Panarin in Florida. With the recent retirement of Roberto Luongo, the Panthers need a goalie.
Getting Panarin and Bobrovsky, along with Quenneville and the other top-tier quality players Florida has, they’re in clear “win-now” mode. If Panarin is trying to win the cup (there’s no reason to think he isn’t) Florida makes sense for him.
Oh. And they don’t have state income tax! The effective tax rate in Florida is 36.78 percent, compared to the 49.34 percent in New York, for example. Advantage Florida.
The first glaring con for the Panthers is just how many people seem to care about the Panthers. Year-over-year the Panthers have one of the lowest attendance records in the NHL. Unfortunately for them, they’ve been irrelevant for almost as long as they’ve existed.
It’s partly due to where the arena is situated and partly due to the very little success the franchise has had over its history. Over the last 18 years, they’ve made the playoffs twice. Just twice.
Does Panarin want to play in front of an almost empty house half the year?