Just moments after announcing they had signed Max Gildon, the Florida Panthers added another prospect. This time it’s Alec Rauhauser that has agreed to terms with the team on a one-year two-way contract. Unlike Gildon, who was a third-round pick in the NHL Entry Draft, Rauhauser went undrafted entirely and was an unrestricted free agent. He recently finished his senior season at Bowling Green University. where he served as captain. Panthers GM Dale Tallon explained why the team went after Rauhauser:
Over four seasons at Bowling Green, Alec has proven himself to be among the best at his position at the collegiate level. He is a skilled two-way defenseman who is a leader both on and off the ice. We are excited to have him join the Panthers organization.
Just like in Gildon’s case, the Florida depth chart likely looks appealing to a player like Rauhauser who is trying to finally make the jump to professional hockey. Though the 25-year old may not have quite the same upside, it’s hard to argue with another 6’3″ defenseman that scored 122 points in 159 college games. Rauhauser was named the WCHA Defensive Player of the Year as a sophomore and a senior, making the conference first or second All-Star team in each of his final three years at Bowling Green.
The Panthers were looking at ways of shaking up their defensive group all season, with various names hitting the rumor mill leading up to the trade deadline. If the front office decides to make a change in the offseason, you can bet names like Gildon and Rauhauser will come in handy, whether logging NHL or AHL minutes.