The Florida Panthers continue to take care of their own this offseason.
Following the high-profile re-signings of Aaron Ekblad, Vincent Trocheck and Reilly Smith, the team locked down depth players Logan Shaw and Jonathan Racine, signing the duo to a pair of one-year, two-way contracts.
Shaw is the more seasoned of the two—the native of Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, dressed for 53 games with the Cats. Potting seven points off of two goals, Shaw finished with a -7 rating, skating 12:14 minutes of ice time per match. He also appeared in three Stanley Cup Playoff games, going pointless.
The six-foot-three, 202-pound winger brought defensive responsibility to the bottom-six. Although he was a minus possession player, Shaw began the majority of his shifts (52%) in the defensive zone, recording 88 hits and 20 blocked shots in the process. And, despite a below-average PDO of 97.9, the team seemed to benefit from Shaw’s presence on the ice, as goaltenders posted a save percentage of .927 during his shifts. Also, Shaw was a serviceable penalty killer, and finished with a takeaway/turnover ratio of +16.
Jonathan Racine, a draft classmate of Shaw’s, also re-upped this Thursday. Described by Hockey’s Future as a “hard hitting (and) physical” defenseman, the product of Montreal, Quebec, has spent the bulk of his professional career with the Panthers’ minor league affiliates. Through 198 career AHL games, Racine’s offensive output has been negligible — his only career goal came this past season, and has assisted on 21 others. He has, however, proven himself to be a prototypical stay-at-home blueliner, accruing 333 penalty minutes while compiling a career plus-minus rating of 28.
What Racine lacks, though, is NHL experience. To date, Racine has managed to appear in a single regular season game, and — given the defensive overhaul the big club has undergone — his chances at cracking the roster look to be growing slim.
General Manager Tom Rowe wants to build a mobile defensive unit, one that is unafraid to jump up and join the rush. Given his skill set, the six-foot-two, 202-pound defenseman doesn’t appear to mesh with that model.