Well Panthers fans it is officially August, which means we are just over two months until the start of the 2013-14 NHL season and the Florida Panthers 20th Anniversary Celebration.
Of course, the action gets started well before then with Panthers Rookie Camp beginning on Sept. 5 and Training Camp beginning on Sept. 12.
For Cats fans, there is a lot to be excited about heading in to this season. Although the shortened 2013 season did not go as planned, our Panthers are back healthy, with an impressive crop of young talent that is getting better and better by the day.
With Calder Trophy-winner Jonathan Huberdeau, No. 2 overall pick Aleksander Barkov, defenseman Erik Gudbranson, goalie Jacob Markstrom and others, the BB&T Center faithful will get to enjoy a young and exciting team all season long.
Combine that youthful talent with the likes of Brian Campbell, Tomas Fleischmann, Marcel Goc, Tomas Kopecky, recently signed playmaker Scott Gomez and others, and our Cats are primed for a run to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
To add to the on-ice excitement, this year marks the 20th Anniversary of the Panthers franchise and we will be celebrating the team’s history, as well as the passion and loyalty of our wonderful fans, all season long.
It all starts on Opening Night Oct. 11 when the Cats take on the same team they played almost 20 years ago during their first game in South Florida – the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The 20th Anniversary celebration will be prominently featured in all 41 home games at the BB&T Center including special appearances from Panthers greats, collectible giveaways, commemorative tickets and programs, fan recognition moments including our original season ticket holders, and more.
In addition, the BB&T Center will have a brand new tool in the tool box in order to properly promote the excitement of the Panthers 20th Anniversary – a big and brand new 360-degree high-definition Panasonic scoreboard.
Thanks to the support from our friends at Broward County, the entire in-game experience will change for the better next season, with every guest that enters the building enjoying a dynamic show unlike anything they have ever experienced before.
Add the new scoreboard to our brand new plaza floor, and a renewed commitment to customer service through the “Talk To Us” program, etc., and we hope the BB&T Center experience will be the best it’s ever been this season.
Having seen some of the initial concepts from our Game Presentation Director Pete Soto, I can tell you Opening Night – and every home game for that matter – is going to be something special.
That said, while hockey is only a few short weeks away, we remain focused on the entertainment side of our business as well, with a huge end of the year run already on the docket including Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails, Michael Buble, Josh Groban, Stone Temple Pilots, Sarah Brightman, Selena Gomez, and more.
Additionally, concert fans should be excited about this Monday when we make another major entertainment announcement regarding an exclusive upcoming act that has become a huge favorite in South Florida.
It may be August and the dead of the NHL offseason, but our staff continues to work hard to push the business forward, all while counting down the days to Opening Night. Hopefully our fans are doing the same, and excited to finally see our Cats back on the ice.
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