Why Does Everyone Say No to Us?


Like the ugly duckling at school who never gets asked to dance, like the worst player in your gym class who never gets picked to be on the team, the Florida Panthers have lost out on another free agent.  Alex Tanguay has reportedly signed a one year deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning pending passing a physical.  The deal has been reported to be for one year at $2.5 million.  Beginning to wonder why the Florida Panthers can’t attract any quality or high profile players?  Or why they can’t seem to hire a full-time general manager?

Let me shed some light on the subject.  This organization seems to be drowning in chaos.  With an apparent sale not yet completed, it seems as though management has it’s hands tied by current ownership and majority owner Alan Cohen.  The Panthers have not spent any money to speak of this summer, while letting some quality pieces leave, and not filling the spots on the roster that are so badly needed.

The Panthers have been known to make some bad trades, sign the wrong free agents, and have a management and coaching carousel that would make your head spin.  But one thing they can’t seem to shake is not being able to attract any star players.  Why?  Well if you can’t win and keep changing your plan who is going to come here?  Last year really was a year to build on.  Missing the playoffs by one point was a tremendous accomplishment with the roster we had.  Did it not occur to anyone that more scoring would be needed?  That by trading your best offensive defenseman, and letting one of your best defensive defenseman leave via free agency that there would be some holes to fill?

I think I could do a better job as GM.  And you don’t even have to pay me a million dollars!

After growing up in Chicago and dealing with “Dollar Bill Wirtz” for all those years, I thought that I would be able to escape cheap ownership.  Guess I was wrong.

It was rumoured a few weeks ago that Florida had signed Tanguay, only to have those rumours prove false.  We don’t even know if the Panthers offered Tanguay a contract.  All I read/heard was that they spoke with Tanguay and his agent.   At that time it seemed as though Tanguay was looking for about $3 million per year, or slightly higher for a one year deal.  After only playing about 60 games last year and only scoring 16 goals he may have priced himself out of Florida.  The Panthers don’t want to pay anyone for that kind of production.  They already made a mistake by signing Rostislav Olesz to a long term deal worth $3 mil per, and he’s slotted for the 3rd or 4th line this season.

I’m not saying that Alex Tanguay is the answer to the Panthers playoff chances, but at least he has some offensive skill that is desperately needed on this club.  However, why on earth Alex would you choose Tampa instead of Florida?   Well I can think of four really good reasons.  Lecavalier, St.Louis, Malone, and Stamkos.  Also, a bolstered defense, and if goalie Mike Smith and backup Antii Nittymaki are even half way decent, Tampa could be one of the most improved teams in the league.  With that potent offense, they won’t need stellar goaltending.

So once again, dissapointment sets in as another player gets away.  Randy Sexton who has been subbing as the GM since Jacques Martin left this club in dissaray  to take the headcoaching job in Montreal (how does that happen?),  can’t seem to convince anyone to come here.  Not all his fault I don’t think.  But for all the ticket promotions, and all promises of how things will be improved again, the attendance again will be at the bottom of the league.  Unless by some miracle a trade is made.  Otherwise besides David Booth, there’s no one to watch.

I have seen Pave Bure attend a few games here in Florida.  Maybe they could dress him once in awhile!  I think he’s be better on one good knee than some of these others on two!  Oh wait, I forgot about Jeff Taffe and Graham Mink!

It’s going to be a long season!

Thanks for reading!