Erik Gudbranson D FLA 12 Days

Gudbranson had an active season debut Thursday against the Lightning, potting a goal on three shot attempts while picking up four penalty minutes.

Gudbranson's pedigree as a former top-three draft choice always makes him worth tracking, despite his rather tepid career production to date. However, defensemen often face notoriously long development curves, so it's certainly within Gudbranson's ability to come through with a breakout in 2014-15. That being said, his standing on the Panthers' third pairing could depress his minutes load, which would in turn hinder his opportunities to pile up points, hits and blocks.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 3 Months

The Florida Panthers have signed Erik Gudbranson to a two-year extension.

The financial terms of Gudbranson's agreement weren't immediately known. He had nine points and 114 penalty minutes in 65 games with the Panthers last season. "Erik is an important part of our young core of talented players who we are pleased to have signed," said Panthers GM Dale Tallon. "He is a big, strong and physical defenseman who is one of the building blocks for our team. We look forward to his continued development and his contributions to the South Florida community."

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 5 Months

Erik Gudbranson scored a goal for Canada in a 3-2 overtime loss to France on Friday at the IIHF World Hockey Championships.

It was a go-ahead goal halfway through the third period that was set up by Colorado's Nathan McKinnon. Of course the French later tied the game and won it in overtime on goal by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare in a shootout.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 6 Months

Erik Gudbranson will represent Canada at the IIHF World Hockey Championships in May.

In 66 games this season, he earned nine points and 114 penalty minutes for the Florida Panthers.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

Erik Gudbranson scored for the third time this season in Tuesday's 5-2 loss to Philadelphia.

He got Florida on the board early in the third period with a wrist shot from the point. He also had a minus-3 rating and four shots. Gudbranson has a goal and an assist in his last two games, but he's registered just nine points this year.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

Erik Gudbranson returned to action on Thursday March 27.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

Florida GM Dale Tallon sees Erik Gudbranson as captain material.

Tallon told an Ottawa radio station recently that Gudbranson "is likely going to be the captain of our team some day." The 22-year-old defenseman was honored to hear that, but he knows he still has plenty of room for improvement before it can become a reality. "Those are great words to hear from Dale. That was pretty cool, but to me it's just about what you do on the ice, it's what you do in the dressing room," said Gudbranson. "I think it starts now. The environment here needs to change. We need to become winners here. I think for these last nine games pushing ourselves to the limit and going out and playing well, playing hard, playing together, is going to be a huge factor for next year." His 2013-14 campaign has been mired by injuries that have limited him to 56 appearances. Gudbranson plays a rugged style but his offensive game still leaves a lot to be desired.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

Florida interim coach Peter Horachek thinks Eric Gudbranson (knee) should be available for Thursday's game against Carolina.

That would make his return much earlier than originally expected. Gudbranson participated in Tuesday's morning skate and he's been sidelined since Mar. 9 with a knee ailment.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

The Florida Panthers have no interest in trading Erik Gudbranson or otherwise letting him leave over the summer.

Gudbranson is scheduled to become a restricted free agent and it sounds like the Panthers might attempt to lock him up to a long-term deal. "He is likely going to be the captain of our team some day," Panthers GM Dale Tallon said. Gudbranson has seven points and 93 penalty minutes in 56 games this season.

Erik Gudbranson D FLA 7 Months

Erik Gudbranson (knee) is expected be sidelined for "more than a week," according to interim bench boss Peter Horachek.

X-rays came back negative but he's still going to miss a fair amount of time after he was hurt Sunday in a collision with the Boston winger Brad Marchand. Mike Mottau was brought up from the minors on Tuesday and he played against Phoenix in Gudbranson's place.