The Panthers added more depth to
their blueline on Tuesday, signing defenseman Mike Weaver to a two-year deal.
Weaver, 32, has played in 339 NHL games in his eight-year career. Weaver spent the past two seasons in St. Louis, scoring a goal with 16 assists in 135 games with the Blues.
Weaver has four goals and 38 assists
in his career and is expected to help Florida on its penalty kill.
Florida now has seven NHL defensemen (including second-year player Dmitry Kulikov) on its roster, meaning – barring a rash of injuries – it’s more than likely that 2010 first round pick Erik Gudbranson will spend this coming season with his junior team and not play for the Panthers.
Florida took Gudbranson with the third overall pick in June.
Weaver spent four seasons at Michigan State and won the AHL’s championship with Chicago in 2002. Weaver has also played for Atlanta (2001-04), Los Angeles (2005-07) and Vancouver (2007-08).
The Panthers also made moves regarding Rochester.
In a surprising move, popular forward Graham Mink -- who scored 20 goals for the Amerks last season -- was shipped to the Blues in exchange for defenseman T.J. Fast. Florida also signed defenseman Joe Callahan to a two-way deal.
The response to the Panthers moving Mink hasn't been a popular one in Rochester. Mink was a fan favorite -- the Panthers seemed to like him as well after he had a strong training camp last year -- and Fast doesn't exactly seem to be a star in the making as he spent much of the past two years in the ECHL.