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2010 NHL Free Agency: Florida Panthers expected to sign Mike Weaver to two-year deal

Aug 3, 2010, 6:30 PM EDT

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mikeweavershoots.jpgThe Florida Panthers are expected to sign defenseman Mike Weaver, according to Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The deal would be for two years, $1.8 million and an annual salary cap hit of 900K.

On paper, there really isn’t much to Weaver. He’s a small (listed at 5-9, 188 lbs.) defenseman who puts up only modest-at-best offense (he had 10 points in 2009-10 season). He did average close to 17 minutes per game in his two seasons with the St. Louis Blues, though.

The Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Steve Gorten points out another good thing about Weaver.

Mike Weaver, a key in the Blues having No. 1 penalty kill unit in NHL last season, expected 2 compete for third pairing spot with panthers

It will be a big crowd on the Panthers blueline next season. The team already has seven defensemen listed on their starting roster according to CapGeek.com, although a few of those deals could probably be transitioned to their AHL affiliate.

While this signing doesn’t fit in with former Blackhawks GM Dale Tallon’s moves to either bring in size or former Blackhawks, Tallon probably got a good look at Weaver since he was in the Central division the last two seasons. It might take a while, but Tallon’s makeover of the Panthers falls in life with the other dramatic changes going on in the once-stale Southeast division.

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