Panthers ink Eetu Luostarinen to 3-year extension

TORONTO, CANADA - MAY 4: Eetu Luotarinen #27 of the Florida Panthers skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during Game Two of the Second Round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on May 4, 2023 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Panthers defeated the Maple Leafs 3-2. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) (Claus Andersen, 2023 Claus Andersen)

SUNRISE, Fla. – The Florida Panthers have extended the contract of one of young, up-and-coming forwards.

On Tuesday the team signed center Eetu Luostarinen to a 3-year contract extension.

The deal will run through the 2026-27 season and pays an average annual value (AAV) of $3 million, according to PuckPedia.

“Eetu is a dynamic two-way center whose speed and strength allow him to excel on any line,” Panthers General Manager Bill Zito said in a statement. “His consistency and dependability are a great asset to our forward group, and we are excited about what he can continue to bring to our lineup in the coming seasons.”

Florida acquired Luostarinen at the 2020 Trade Deadline in the deal that sent Vincent Trocheck to the Carolina Hurricanes.

In the time since, the 24-year-old has steadily seen his game improve.

Last season, Luostarinen put up career high numbers in goals and assists (17-26-43) while providing solid two-way play, particularly at even strength.

He was also a key member of Florida’s penalty killing unit.

Locking Luostarinen up for the next four years at a low cap number will allow Florida more roster flexibility while maintaining depth in the team’s forward ranks.

About the Author:

David Dwork joined the WPLG Local 10 News team in August 2019. Born and raised in Miami-Dade County, David has covered South Florida sports since 2007.