The Florida Panthers added some key veteran depth to their team Sunday when they announced they have signed unrestricted veteran free agent Brian Boyle to a one-year deal, one-way contract. TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports the deal is worth $940K. The 34-year-old Boyle is expected to join the team in Coral Springs for practice on Monday.
“With over 700 games played in the NHL and over 100 more in the playoffs, Brian brings a wealth of experience to our club,” said general manager Dale Tallon. “He adds versatility and character to our lineup.”
Boyle, who will be now playing for his seventh NHL team and fifth team in the last three years, is coming off an 13-goal performance with the New Jersey Devils last year. However, with their season lost, the Devils traded Boyle to the Predators for a 2019 second-round pick. Boyle netted five goals in 26 games for the Predators. He scored 13 goals in 2017-18 for the Devils, and 13 goals in 2015-16 and 2016-17 for the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Boyle received the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy in 2017-18 for perseverence, sportsmanship and dedication for returning to hockey after being diagnosed chronic myeloid leukemia.
The veteran is expected to immediately join their bottom-six, likely centering the fourth line. Head coach Joel Quenneville has spoken often about the importance of puck possession, which Boyle should help with. Throw in his 6-foot-6 frame and physical play and Boyle should add much needed grit to the Panthers this year. The team has already assigned youngster Henrik Borgstrom to the AHL to get more playing time, which should open up a spot on the team’s roster.
McKenzie was the first to report on the signing.