Florida Panthers co-owner: Cats in 5

By: Andy Slater

Florida Panthers co-owner Doug Cifu predicted his team will beat the New York Islanders in a series that he says will last only five games.

"Cats in five," Cifu told me on my show this afternoon on 940 WINZ and iHeartRadio.

"If you look at all the experts ... everybody's picking the Panthers, so there must be something to it," Cifu added. 

The Panthers and Islanders begin their best-of-seven series tonight at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL.

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(Photo: floridapanthers.com)

Florida Panthers talking max contract with Aleksander Barkov

By: Andy Slater

The Florida Panthers are staying in Sunrise and now they want to make sure their rising-star center does as well. 

Aleksander Barkov and the Panthers are currently working on a long-term extension that would keep him with the team through the 2021-2022 season, possibly until 2024, I've learned from sources close to the situation. 

NHL teams can sign a current player to a maximum eight-year contract, a move the Panthers are willing to make with Barkov. 

Locking up a young star wouldn't be anything new for the Panthers. The team gave 23-year-old Nick Bjustad a six-year contract extension in Dec. 2014.

Barkov was the second overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. The 20-year-old has 78 points in 150 career NHL games and is set to be a restricted free agent in 2016.


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(Photo: NHL.com)