Panthers’ Joe Thornton gets maximum fine for slashing as his early season struggles continue

Florida Panthers center Joe Thornton was fined $1,875 by the NHL on Wednesday for slashing Tampa Bay Lightning forward Boris Katchouk.

The fine is the maximum allowable under the league’s collective bargaining agreement.

Thornton, 42, was assessed a two-minute penalty for slashing with 4:50 remaining in the first period of the Panthers’ 4-1 win over the Lightning on Tuesday.

Joe Thornton early season struggles

Thornton has been kept off the scoresheet in all three games with the Panthers since signing a one-year, $750,000 contract in the offseason.

Through three games, he has no points with a plus minus rating of -1. His ice time is also down from last seasons 13:43 with the Maple Leafs to just 10:54. It likely isn’t the start he imagined.

“I see their team on paper,” Thornton said after inking his new deal “I love what they’re building, and I’m excited to be a part of it. Everything is ultimately about winning the Stanley Cup. The Panthers are right there in my opinion.”

The recipient of the Hart and Art Ross trophies in 2005-06, Thornton has collected 1,529 points (425 goals, 1,104 assists) in 1,683 career games with the Boston Bruins (1997-2005), San Jose Sharks (2005-20), Maple Leafs (2020-21) and Panthers. He was selected by Boston with the first overall pick of the 1997 NHL Draft.

Thornton is the NHL’s active leader in assists and points. He ranks seventh overall in assists and 14th in points in league history.

He began his NHL career with the Bruins before being traded to the Sharks for Marco Sturm, Wayne Primeau and Brad Stuart in November 2005.

Thornton captured an Olympic gold medal for Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Games. He also was part of two championship teams in the World Cup of Hockey (2004, 2016).

–Field Level Media contributed to this report