Apr 21, 2012; Sunrise, FL, USA; Florida Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen during the third period against the New Jersey Devils in game five of the 2012 Eastern Conference quarterfinals at BankAtlantic Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-US PRESSWIRE

Panthers Get Shafted By EA Yet Again


Fans of the EA Sports NHL franchise have grown accustomed to enjoying new improvements to each game, year by year.  Whether there is new game modes one year or enhanced player models the next year or even more animations the year after that, it seems like EA Sports makes it their duty to continuously improve their NHL simulation until their game is as close to the real thing as it can get.

Unfortunately, yet again EA Sports has apparently overlooked the team closest to my heart, the Florida Panthers.  For yet another year, EA has pretty much screwed the Panthers within their own game.  This year, it has to do with the player ratings, but it hasn’t been limited to that in recent years.

Consider last year’s game, NHL 12.  The Panthers’ uniforms looked like an absolute joke.  For some reason beyond me, the numbers, letters, and logos were all too small.  How small?  This small.  Compared to teams like the Rangers, Bruins, or even the Jets (whose uniforms were released later than the Panthers’), our jerseys looked flat-out ridiculous.  All the little numbers just ate at my head until I could no longer play the game as my favorite team.

This year, hopefully EA got the uniforms right.  But they already screwed up the player ratings.  Case in point was the absolute snubbing of two different players: Brian Campbell and Jose Theodore.  Brian Campbell last year was tied for second in the league for scoring by defensemen, with 53 points.  He was given a measly 83 overall rating.  Players with a better rating?  Zach Bogosian, Adam Larsson, Fedor Tyutin, Nick Schultz, Ian White.  Huh?

Another example is Jose Theodore.  With a .917 save percentage and a 2,46 GAA, Theodore had a very above-average year for an NHL goalie.  His NHL 13 rating is only 78.  Roberto Luongo, with very similar statistics last year while simultaneously losing his starting job to Cory Schneider as the season wore on, is ranked an 89.  Where is the justice?

There could be some sort of conspiracy afoot, where EA makes the Panthers terrible so the average player can go against the Rangers and Penguins and Bruins in the playoffs.  There could also be a programmer for the game who is the biggest Capitals fan in the world, and nobody checks him.  Or maybe nobody even looked to see how much the Panthers improved from two years ago to now, and assumed the team was still one of the bottom-feeders of the East.  These are the only reasons I can think of as to why we get shafted so much by EA Sports.  Add these injuries to suspect AI, poor game modes, too frequent one-time goals, and constant freezing of the screen, and I’m just about done with EA Sports and their NHL franchise.

Thanks for reading!  Be sure to comment!

Follow the Rat Pack on Twitter: me @GreatScottsman, Frank Rekas @TheRatTrick, David Lasseter@davidlasseter, Josh Luecht @joshluecht, Patrick McLaughlin @PatrickRattrick, Gabrielle Kiger@gabbykiger, Paige Lewis @RattrickLewiz, Chrissy Parente @chrissaay44, Adam Reid@adamreid_,David Rodriguez @davidbub_2, and Justin Rosenberg @justinrosenberg.  Also, please joinour Facebook Fan Page and hit the like button, send us photos, and make some comments.

Tags: Brian Campbell Jose Theodore

  • http://twitter.com/kSelvig kSelvig

    lol, for some reason I don’t think EA has some vendetta against the Panthers, if anything it’s that they probably only watched 2 Florida games last year, and those were probably game 6 and 7, but who knows… I’ll give you Brian Campbell is probably underrated, but like everything else that comes with being a Panthers fan, it’s going to take more than one decent, surprising season to get some respect.

    And I never noticed an issue with Florida’s jerseys in NHL 12, but oh well.

  • CATS4LIFE

    totally agree.. lol i consistently play the game as the panthers.. its always a disadvantage but i normally win anyway. Panthers 4 LIFE!

  • Holy Jokinen

    While I largely agree with the overall point you’re making (because, let’s face it, it’s true) I do have to say that the number you are looking at is the Overall rating. The Overall rating is just an average of all of the skill ratings for that player. So Campbell’s skating stats are probably all in the mid-upper 80′s, but he’s probably got a very low checking rating, and I bet his shooting numbers are somewhat below average as well.

    Also, the player ratings are updated constantly throughout the season, so as players prove themselves worthy (or unworthy) EA goes in and changes the numbers.

    All said, I completely agree. The Panthers are simply not as popular as other teams and will therefore get shafted in the ratings department. Similarly, I would bet that if we had made it to the Cup, or even ECF, we would have some overrated players on the team. It’s just how it happens.

    Nice article.

  • http://www.facebook.com/belfour Adam Reid

    This is absolutely terrible. Especially the stat on Brian Campbell. Not only was Campbell deserving of a higher rating due to his stats, but having won the Lady Byng should serve as some sort of extra boost.

  • http://twitter.com/tiburondeoreo Rene

    Going to blame Canadian bias…. only way to explain why Calgary and Winnpeg have “better” teams but finished way out of the playoffs…. and didn’t do much to improve over the offseason

  • Hoser

    I don’t want to say “dumbest post ever” but being so concerned about the video game rankings of real players or thinking that EA Sports has an OMG Conspiracy against ANY team, let alone the Panthers is just plain silly.
    Sigh…this is why a lockout would be terrible. More dumb articles like this.

  • Artigas

    Have you ever considered the fact that the team is mediocre with mediocre players? Versteeg is good, Weiss is decent and then its a drop off. They’ve only improved because they play sound position hockey and all play to the system.

    They aren’t good. Good news is with 1 full season, Huberdeau will be the top Fla player… ranked in the low 80s.

    Get a grip bud