Fontaine has spent the past three seasons with the Minnesota Wild, scoring 68 points in 197 games. Originally signed after dominating at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Fontaine found immediate success in the AHL with the Houston Aeros, putting up 111 points over his first two seasons. As an NHL rookie in 2013-14 he scored 13 goals and looked to be on his way to a productive career with the Wild, but has seen his goal totals drop in each following season, bottoming out at five last season.
Still only 28, Fontaine is a perfect candidate for a PTO as he’s shown NHL ability before but is coming off the worst season of his career. If the Panthers find that he’ll still be able to contribute at the highest level, he could fit in nicely as a cheap bottom-six option, or jump into a top line role with their AHL affiliate.