Florida Panthers' 3 Worst Contracts of 2023-24

The Florida Panthers are one of the best teams in the NHL this season and are looking like a playoff threat. The team is fortunate to have so many very good contracts, because there are some that are less ideal. Let's take a look at which ones those are this season.

Spencer Knight

The Panthers have allocated a ton of money to their goaltenders between Sergei Bobrovsky and Spencer Knight, just to have Knight still be playing in the minors, and not particularly well. The Panthers really jumped the gun on giving this young goalie a big contract. He had played 36 games in the NHL to that point (Sept. 27, 2022) as a backup and has only played 21 games at the highest level since. Anthony Stolarz has been the effective backup on the team this entire season. There are still two more years left on Knight's $4.5 million AAV deal.

Aaron Ekblad

Aaron Ekblad was once one of the top defensemen in the league, but isn't exactly the same after his injuries. He is paid as a top defender on the team at $7.5 million AAV, but for each of the past two seasons has not been close. Brandon Montour was last season and Gustav Forsling has this season. Ekblad has produced 55 points in 118 games while averaging 22:30 of ice time per game after putting up 57 points in 61 games and playing 25 minutes a night in 2021-22 when his cap hit was worth it. He has one more year left on his deal.

Dmitry Kulikov

Dmitry Kulikov was brought in last offseason to be a filler until some of the players on the back-end got healthy and since there wasn't a ton of money to work with. His contract at $1 million AAV isn't a burden, but it also isn't really needed now. With Forsling and Ekblad out of the lineup due to injuries, Kulikov is still serving as the seventh defenseman and likely won't find much or any time in the lineup to finish out the season.

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