The Florida Panthers have signed forward Owen Tippett to a three year entry-level contract deal. Tippett was the Panthers’ first pick (10th overall) in the 2017 National Hockey League Entry Draft.
“I’m thrilled to sign Owen to his first NHL contract,” said Panthers President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Dale Tallon in an interview with NHL.com. “Owen is a natural goal scorer with a bright future and he already possesses NHL-ready size and speed. We’re looking forward to watching him compete for a spot on our NHL roster at training camp this fall.”
We've agreed to terms with @TippettOwen on an entry-level contract!
— Florida Panthers (@FlaPanthers) July 19, 2017
Florida Panthers Sign Owen Tippett to Entry-Level Contract
Standing at 6’0″, 203 pounds, the 18 year old Tippett spent 2016-17 with the Mississauga Steelheads of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). In 60 regular-season games, Tippett scored 44 goals and added 31 assists for a total of 75 points. In the postseason, he posted 19 points in 20 games (ten goals, nine helpers). This season, Tippett ranked fifth in the OHL in goals. Tippett also played in the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, where he represented Team Canada as an alternate captain. In four tournament games, Tippett notched a goal and an assist.
“He’s obviously a big kid, so physically he’ll be ready to play [this season],” said Florida’s Director of Player Development Bryan McCabe to the Sun Sentinel. “We’ll have to see if he’s mentally ready to leave home. If he’s ready for that long battle, an 82-game schedule, he’ll decide that by his play. We’re not going to rush the kid. If he proves he’s ready, then he’ll stay.”
The Panthers lost four top-nine forwards this off-season in Jussi Jokinen, Jaromir Jagr, Jon Marchessault, and Reilly Smith, so they could really use a player with scoring potential such as Tippett. He will have all the right chances to make the team. Tippett just wrapped up the Panthers’ prospect development camp last week and will head into training camp soon.
Main Photo: MISSISSAUGA, ON – NOVEMBER 27: the Mississauga Steelheads the Erie Otters during OHL game action on November 27, 2015 at the Hershey Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images)