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Panthers defenseman Garrison says signing with Canucks would be “dream come true”

Florida Panthers v Colorado Avalanche

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 18: Jason Garrison #52 of the Florida Panthers controls the puck against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on January 18, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The Colorado Avalanche defeated the Florida Panthers 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

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Jason Garrison says playing for his hometown Canucks would be a dream come true.

Will the dream become a reality?

That’s one of the things the Panthers defenseman discussed with a Vancouver-area radio station today in regards to his playing future.

Garrison, 27, enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2011-12. He scored 16 goals -- a Florida franchise record for defensemen, third-most in the NHL -- and a career-high 33 points while playing over 23 minutes a night.

That’s set him up for a big raise on the $675,000 he made last season, and he said he’d love to make that money playing in Vancouver.

From CKWX News 1130 (via Twitter):

-- Garrison, a native of White Rock (Vancouver suburb), said he grew up watching the Canucks and it would be a thrill to play for his hometown team.

-- Garrison said signing with Canucks would be a dream come true, but will first try to re-up with Florida.

-- He wants to return to the Panthers, but his agent hasn’t spoken to team brass lately.

It’ll be interesting to see how Garrison’s situation plays out.

If he goes to free agency on July 1, he’ll be at the top of a free agent defenseman class that thins out after Ryan Suter. Of the under-30 set, Garrison is one of the most intriguing options along with Philly’s Matt Carle (27) and Washington’s Dennis Wideman (29).

Ergo, you can bet there’ll be suitors for his services.