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Ben Chiarot settling in very nicely with the Florida Panthers

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Florida Panthers defenseman Ben Chiarot chases down the puck during a game against the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday night. — Roger Lee Photographer (561) 866-2000

SUNRISE — One thing Florida Panthers general manager Bill Zito looks very closely at when he is trying to acquire a new player is figuring out how said player will fit in with his tight-knit group.

The Panthers were said to be in on Montreal Canadiens defenseman Ben Chiarot for a long time before actually swinging a deal for him as the team did a lot of research before making the trade.

Chiarot is, as Zito had hoped, fitting in real nice.

Saturday night, he played close to 24 minutes in the Panthers’ 3-2 overtime win against Toronto.

That gave the Panthers a franchise-record 13-game winning streak heading into tonight’s game against the Lightning.

“When we looked at areas we thought we could help our team in, we thought this particular player checked a lot of boxes for us,” Zito told FHN after the trade went down.

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