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Panthers Add Some Offense: Dominic Moore Signs

Dominicmoore The Panthers added some scoring punch to their lineup Monday, signing free agent center Dominic Moore to a one-year deal worth over just $1 million.

Moore, 29, was an unrestricted free agent who hadn't found a home through training camp.

Florida general manager Randy Sexton said the Panthers had been talking to Moore's agent at times during the summer, but decided to make a firm offer after this past weekend's series in Finland. In that two-game set against Chicago, the Panthers went 1-1, winning Friday's game 4-3 in a shootout before losing 4-0 the following night.

In those games, the Panthers were outshot 88-47, and won just 43 percent of faceoffs.

Moore won 54 percent of his faceoffs last season for Toronto and Buffalo.

"He brings several things that we've been trying to improve on," said Sexton after Monday's practice in Coral Springs. "He's good on faceoffs, and that's a key area of concern for us. . . . He's very good defensively and for me and Peter, that's critical. Guys have to play both sides of the ice."

The Panthers will have to shuffle some things on offense, but that seems fine with coach Pete DeBoer. Florida's top two lines appear set, with Moore looking to settle in as the third line center between Rostislav Olesz and Radek Dvorak. That would slip Gregory Campbell to the fourth line, where he could either center or most likely go back to wing alongside center Shawn Matthias and winger Kamil Kreps.

Ville Koistinen, who played on the fourth line in the opening two games, was back working with the defensemen on Monday.

"He's one of those guys who can only add to your team," said Campbell. "I think it's good for us. It adds depth. All teams have injuries unfortunately and he adds another dimension to our team, he adds grit."

Moore's best offensive season came last year when he scored 12 goals in 63 games with the Maple Leafs before being traded to Buffalo at the deadline. Moore didn't do much for the Sabres down the stretch, scoring one goal with three assists in 18 games.

In 305 NHL games, Moore has 35 goals with 65 assists. This is Moore's sixth NHL team, the Harvard grad starting with the Rangers in 2003 and since playing in Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Toronto, Buffalo and Florida.

Sexton said Moore was skating in the Boston area and would have to return to Canada to get immigration matters taken care of. DeBoer said he would be in the lineup Friday at Carolina -- even if he doesn't practice with the Panthers prior to that day's morning skate.

"It's great news and shows our ownership is committed to making sure we have an opportunity to be competitive in a tough conference," DeBoer said. "He's a guy who gives us some depth, a face off presence. He had a career year last year. I like his versatility."

-- The Panthers got to experience their new training facility for the first time on Monday. The $10 million expansion to Incredible Ice got rave reviews from players who enjoyed a full locker room, weight room and hot/cold pools at the facility for the first time.

"I got lost a couple of times," Kamil Kreps joked. "You need a map to get around here."

-- Injured winger Nick Tarnasky was at the facility Monday although there is no real update on his status. Tarnasky, who fractured an orbital bone in a fight with Ottawa's Chris Neil on Sept. 15, says he hasn't begun skating again.

-- Former Florida goalie Craig Anderson was the NHL's second star of opening week after the Colorado netminder stopped 73 of 74 shots faced in leading the Avs to a pair of wins.