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Report Card: Grading the offseason moves of the Florida Panthers

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Florida panthers offseason moves
Carter Verhaeghe visits the Florida Panthers locker room not long after signing with the team as a free agent. // @FlaPanthers

When Bill Zito took over as general manager of the Florida Panthers, one of his goals in making offseason moves was to make his new team a lot tougher.

His first couple moves were made to do just that.

Zito, who was offered the job on Sept. 1, made his first deal as Florida’s GM a big one, sending Mike Matheson and Colton Sceviour to Pittsburgh for veteran power forward Patric Hornqvist.

Not only is Hornqvist a two-time Stanley Cup champ, but he is a pain to play against. A beloved teammate in Pittsburgh, Hornqvist was not liked elsewhere.

Teams hate playing against him.

When the free agency market opened, Zito’s first signing was to bring in one of the toughest defensemen around.

Radko Gudas, suspended by the league four times, brings the hammer.

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