The Florida Panthers agreed to a six-year contract extension worth $35.4 million with Aleksander Barkov on Monday.
The big deal will keep one of Florida's most important assets in town for years to come. Barkov has 12 goals and 30 points overall this season. The 20-year old is a big reason that the Panthers currently sit atop the Atlantic Division.
Barkov is currently playing under his entry-level deal which will come to an end at the conclusion of the current season. With a $925,000 cap number this year, Barkov has been one of the best values in the game.
The biggest moment for Florida this year has been its franchise record 12-game winning streak which recently came to an end. During that streak many players stepped up, but Barkov was noticeably more involved. In fact, Barkov and his linemates combined for 36 points including 15 goals. It was a superb effort from Barkov along with Jaromir Jagr and Jonathan Huberdeau.
Barkov has shown an ability to improve his game each season. Even though he posted solid numbers in first two campaigns, Barkov is on pace to smash his totals from 2014-15. Last season Barkov had 36 points total, and he has amassed nearly that much in just 38 games in 2015-16.
Barkov who has taken part in an amusing tribute to Kevin Spacey this year, sent a message on Twitter to the acclaimed actor on Monday as well.
The Panthers have been one of the best stories in the NHL this season, and are looking to return to the playoffs. With 61 points heading into its next game on Tuesday, Florida sits in second place in the Eastern Conference.
Tuesday's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs will begin at 7:30 p.m.