5 Florida Panthers players who may not return next season feat. Brandon Montour

NHL: Stanley Cup Final-Edmonton Oilers at Florida Panthers
5 Florida Panthers players who may not return next season feat. Brandon Montour (Image: IMAGN))

The Florida Panthers won the Stanley Cup Finals defeating the Edmonton Oilers in Game 7. Florida took a 3-0 series lead before losing three straight to force a Game 7, but the Panthers won 2-1 to hoist Lord Stanley's Cup.

However, Florida could look like a much different team next season as the Panthers have 11 unrestricted free agents and one RFA. So, changes will likely be happening.

5 Florida Panthers players who may not return next season

#1, Brandon Montour

Brandon Montour was one of the Florida Panthers' top defensemen this season, but he could be leaving them in free agency.

Montour made $3.5 million this past season and DailyFaceoff.com projects him to get a seven-year $8.7 million per year. Florida likely won't be able to afford that as an NHL team will give Montour a hefty deal to be their No. 1 defenseman.

#2, Kyle Okposo

Kyle Okposo may decide to retire from the NHL and go out as a Stanley Cup champion.

Okposo is 36 and has been in the NHL since the 2007-08 season. The forward hadn't played in a playoff game since 2016 as he was with the Buffalo Sabres for eight years and they never made the playoffs once.

At the deadline, Buffalo traded him to Florida to give him a chance to win and Okposo did just that. At 36, he isn't a full-time NHL player anymore and may opt to retire.

#3, Anthony Stolarz

Anthony Stolarz is a pending UFA (Image: IMAGN)
Anthony Stolarz is a pending UFA (Image: IMAGN)

Anthony Stolarz was the Florida Panthers' backup goalie but is a pending free agent and will likely be leaving Florida this summer.

The Panthers have Sergei Bobrovsky as their starter and Spencer Knight, who they have $4.5 million to be their backup. Stolarz doesn't have a spot on this team and he will have interest from several teams come July 1.

Stolarz will likely look to sign with a team where he can be a starting goalie or be part of a tandem and get 30-40 starts a year.

#4, Dmitry Kulikov

Dmitry Kulikov is a pending UFA (Image: IMAGN)
Dmitry Kulikov is a pending UFA (Image: IMAGN)

Dmitry Kulikov was in his second stint with the Florida Panthers. The defenseman was drafted by Florida with the 14th pick in 2009 and was a member of the team until 2016 when he went to the Buffalo Sabres.

Kulikov signed a one-year $1 million deal with Florida this past offseason, and after a successful year, the Russian defender will be in for a raise and likely a multi-year deal.

Kulikov could return to Florida, but after winning a Cup and at age 33, he likely will be looking for the biggest payday he can get.

#5, Nick Cousins

Nick Cousins' time as a Florida Panther is likely over after he was a healthy scratch down the stretch and in Game 7.

Cousins played a key role for Florida this season on the fourth line, but he's 30 and the Panthers will likely look to go younger at that role. Cousins, meanwhile, will likely want to sign with a team where he can be an everyday player which he won't be in Florida.

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Edited by James Carter
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