Bobrovsky says he came to Florida to win the Stanley Cup

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Sergei Bobrovsky already has two Vezina Trophies, the award handed out at the end of each season to the NHLs top goaltender.

Hes not looking for a third.

For the Florida Panthers new goalie, only one trophy matters now.

Bobrovsky and Floridas three other free agent signings — defenseman Anton Stralman, and forwards Brett Connolly and Noel Acciari — put on their new Panthers sweaters for the first time Tuesday in their official introduction to South Florida. When theyre back to begin training camp in just over two months, the Stanley Cup will be the singular goal for the long-struggling Panthers.

“It doesnt matter what you win individually,” Bobrovsky said. “Hockeys a team sport and its all about the Cup. Only one team can win the Cup each season. Thats my main goal. Thats what I want to do. Thats why I am here now. I believe in this team. I believe in this group.”

Bobrovsky was the biggest acquisition for the Panthers this summer, at least from a player sense. Floridas offseason began with a coaching change and the hiring of three-time Stanley Cup champion Joel Quenneville, who said having a great goaltender is “the biggest ingredient” when putting together a team that can truly win a title.

And the Panthers think they got the best goalie in the game, someone who led the NHL with nine shutouts last season and then backstopped Columbus to a stunning sweep of Tampa Bay in the opening round of the playoffs — after the Lightning were far and away the leagues best team during the regular season.

“Sergei, we know the importance of goaltending,” Quenneville said. “He comes in and gives us a No. 1 goalie that can play big games. Hes going to play a lot of hockey here. We know how goaltending can influence a game and we know how goaltending can win in the playoffs as well. So hes excited about this opportunity.”

Bobrovsky was long believed to be Floridas top free-agent target, and it was widely presumed that he would pick the Panthers. He decided last week that he would indeed sign with Florida, and a $70 million, seven-year offer got it done.

“With the bright future this team has, with the great coach, with the great management, and with the really talented group of guys Im excited to be here,” Bobrovsky said. “I think we can make something special here.”

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