Kaboom! That’s the best way I can come up with to describe what GM Dale Tallon has done to the Florida Panthers roster this trade deadline day. Tallon completed four trades, two within the Southeast Division in a day that freed up cap space (A LOT of cap space) for next season. Frank has your recap of today’s action here.
As much as this looks bad and is tough to take as other teams gear up for this playoffs, it had to be this way. The team, as it was constructed up until last week, didn’t have much of a shelf life. Since Dale Tallon took over as general manager earlier this year, this team has been about the future, the blueprint that’s currently being pushed by the club. Were any of those traded since last week going to be part of the competitive future? Certainly not. Would I have like to see a little bit more come back to the club? Absolutely, but the past week has been about purging players and their contracts (yes, it’s a salary dump) to completely make this team over.
For the past few years, management has taken a core of players who are good but, nowhere near the talent level of the elite clubs in the NHL, and added a few players that didn’t draw much interest elsewhere and hoped that it would be enough. It hasn’t been enough, and it would never be enough with the talent level as it is. And yes, while success is not guaranteed by going this route, I’ll take my chances with the guy who has already put together a Stanley Cup winning team. And after today, Tallon has the flexibility to completely remake this team like it should’ve been years ago.
So yes, Panther fans, here we are in what is yet another season that ends without a chance at the postseason, but this time, the club just might end up being better in the long run because of it. But the Panthers better make this one count because, I doubt they have too many chances left here.
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