Sunny South Florida just got a bit sunnier for Vincent Trocheck. The Florida Panthers have signed forward Vincent Trocheck to a six-year, $28.5 million contract. The 22-year-old Trocheck tallied 37 goals and 46 assists in just 146 games and tied for third in goals for Florida last season and was fifth in total points. He as a key player as the Panthers won the Atlantic Division title
General manager Tom Rowe says Trocheck (25 goals and 28 assists) “played an important role in our success last season and will be a prominent part of the Panthers for years to come.”
Trocheck’s signing came one day after Florida signed free agent defenseman Jason Demers a five-year contract, two days after defenseman Aaron Ekblad signed an eight-year extension and James Reimer signed a five-year contract. Forward Reilly Smith signed a five-year extension Sunday and is the ninth Panthers player signed through at least the next five seasons, along with Ekblad, Demers, Reimer, defenseman Keith Yandle, goalie Roberto Luongo, and centers Aleksander Barkov and Nick Bjugstad.
“We’ve been signing all of our core guys to long-term deals,” Trocheck said. “It just helps us feel a lot more comfortable. I think we know after last season that we have the ability to compete with anybody in the League. And with the changes that we’ve made and the additions that we’ve made, it’s just a stepping stone.”
“It’s definitely been a ride,” Trocheck said. “Last year going into camp I wasn’t even really positive that I’d be on the team and I was kind of fighting for a spot. I was able to go into camp and kind of make a little bit of an impact and halfway through the year got pretty comfortable. After I got my confidence, I think it was all (better) from there.
“Now that I was able to do what I did last year, it definitely helps me going into this season. I’ve just got to try to build off of that now and hope that I can make strides and hopefully produce even more this year.”
Jaromir Jagr Keeping NHL Options Open, Considering Europe
Jagr is coming off posting 46 points in 82 games last season with the Florida Panthers and is looking to continue his playing career.
“The most serious negotiations I have are with Kladno. Because Kladno has a smart owner who knows what he wants,” Jagr joked in an interview with NHL.com. Jagr, 45, owns the team in Czech Republic’s second-tier professional league.
“No, really, I don’t have a clue. I leave it all on my agent [Petr Svoboda]. There is a couple of [NHL] teams that showed interest, but nothing specific yet.”
Jagr also admitted that he “didn’t expect it would be so hard to get a job in the NHL this year”.
Jagr’s goal remains to end up back in NHL next season.
“That would be the advantage of playing for Kladno. One thing is I would be at home and the other is I would have a chance to leave for the NHL anytime there is an opportunity,” he said. “Let’s say some team deals with injuries and needs help, then I could pack my stuff in the next day and go. If I played in Extraliga, I wouldn’t have such an option unless the Czech league season would be over.”
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