Florida Panthers

Nick Bjugstad signs six-year deal with Panthers

Florida Panthers center Nick Bjugstad (27) reacts after scoring a goal to tie the NHL hockey game during the third period against the Montreal Canadiens, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014, in Sunrise, Fla. The Canadiens won 2-1 in a shootout.
Florida Panthers center Nick Bjugstad (27) reacts after scoring a goal to tie the NHL hockey game during the third period against the Montreal Canadiens, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014, in Sunrise, Fla. The Canadiens won 2-1 in a shootout. AP

Tuesday was one heck of a night for Nick Bjugstad.

Not long after scoring the game-tying goal in an eventual 2-1 shootout loss to Montreal, the Panthers' center was signing a six-year deal with the team sources told The Miami Herald.

Bjugstad, a restricted free agent following this season, will get $4.1 million annually.

"He's a cornerstone piece to the franchise,'' the source said.

Bjugstad's new deal will be announced by the team on Wednesday afternoon.

On Tuesday, the University of Minnesota graduate scored his team-leading 13th goal with under two minutes left to help the Panthers force overtime and at least get a point out of their game with the Canadiens.

Last year, Bjugstad led the Panthers in scoring with 38 points as a rookie.

Bjugstad left Minnesota in 2012 and signed with the Panthers, the 11 games he played burning a year off his entry level contract.

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