Tampa Bay Lightning
The Tampa Bay Lightning are a professional ice hockey team based in Tampa, Florida. It is a member of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League; the Lightning have one Stanley Cup championship in their history, in 2003–04. The team is referred to as the Bolts, the nickname was used on the former third jerseys; the Lightning plays home games in Amalie Arena in Tampa. The owner of the Lightning is Jeffrey Vinik; the team is coached by Jon Cooper, who has led the team since 2013. In the late 1980s, the NHL announced. Two rival groups from the Tampa Bay Area decided to bid for a franchise: a St. Petersburg-based group fronted by future Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes owners Peter Karmanos and Jim Rutherford, a Tampa-based group fronted by two Hall of Famers—Phil Esposito and his brother Tony. One of the Esposito group's key backers, the Pritzker family, backed out a few months before the bid, to be replaced by a consortium of Japanese businesses headed by Kokusai Green, a golf course and resort operator.
On paper, it looked. The Esposito group would win the expansion franchise, name the team the Lightning, after Tampa Bay's status as the "Lightning Capital of North America." After being awarded the franchise, Phil Esposito installed himself as president and general manager, while Tony became chief scout. Terry Crisp, who played for the Philadelphia Flyers when they won two Stanley Cups in the mid-1970s and coached the Calgary Flames to a Stanley Cup in 1989, was tapped as the first head coach. Phil Esposito hired former teammates from the Boston Bruins of the 1970s, including former linemate Wayne Cashman as an assistant coach and former Bruin trainer John "Frosty" Forristal as the team's trainer; the inaugural team photo has him flanked by Cashman and player Ken Hodge, Jr. son of his other Bruins' linemate. The Lightning turned heads in the pre-season when Manon Rheaume became the first woman to play in an NHL game, which made her the first woman to play in any of the major professional North American sports leagues.
She played for the Lightning against the St. Louis Blues, stopped seven of nine shots; the Lightning played their first regular season game on October 7, 1992 in Tampa's tiny 11,000-seat Expo Hall at the Florida State Fairgrounds. They shocked; the team shot to the top of the Campbell Conference's Norris Division within a month, behind Kontos' initial torrid scoring pace and a breakout season by forward Brian Bradley. However, it buckled under the strain of some of the longest road trips in the NHL—their nearest division rival, the Blues, were over 1,000 miles away—and finished in last place with a record of 23–54–7 for 53 points; this was, at one of the best-ever showings by an NHL expansion team. Bradley's 42 goals gave Tampa Bay fans optimism for the next season; the following season saw the Lightning shift to the Eastern Conference's Atlantic Division, as well as move into the Florida Suncoast Dome in St. Petersburg, reconfigured for hockey and renamed the "ThunderDome." The team acquired goaltender Daren Puppa, left wing goal scorer Petr Klima, veteran forward Denis Savard.
While Puppa's play resulted in a significant improvement in goals allowed, Savard was long past his prime and Klima's scoring was offset by his defensive lapses. The Lightning finished last in the Atlantic Division in 1993–94 with a record of 30–43–11 for 71 points. Another disappointing season followed in the lockout-shortened 1994–95 season with a record of 17–28–3 for 37 points. In their fourth season, 1995–96, behind Bradley's team-leading 79 points, second-year forward Alexander Selivanov's 31 goals, Roman Hamrlik's All-Star year on defense, the Lightning qualified for the playoffs, posting a 38–33–12 record for 88 points and nosing out the defending Stanley Cup champion New Jersey Devils for the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference by a single win. Due to his stellar play in net, Puppa was named a finalist for the Vezina Trophy. Playing the Philadelphia Flyers, a team seen as a Stanley Cup contender, in the first round, the Lightning split the opening two games in Philadelphia before taking Game 3 in overtime before a ThunderDome crowd of 28,183.
This was the largest crowd for an NHL game, a record that stood until the 2003 Heritage Classic in Edmonton. An injury to Puppa in that game, would see the Lightning lose the next three games and the series; the Lightning moved into the Ice Palace for the 1996 -- 97 season. They had acquired goal-scorer Dino Ciccarelli from the Detroit Red Wings during the 1996 off-season, he did not disappoint, scoring 35 goals while Chris Gratton notched another 30 goals; the team appeared destined for another playoff appearance, but suffered a devastating rash of injuries. Puppa developed back trouble. Bradley lost time to a series of concussions that would limit him to a total of 49 games from 1996 until his retirement in December 1999. Center John Cullen developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma, missed the last 12 games of the 1996–97 season. Decimated by these ailments, the Light
Sean Gerald Couturier is a Canadian-American professional ice hockey player playing for, an alternate captain of the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League. The Flyers selected him eighth overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Couturier was born in Phoenix, Arizona while his father, Sylvain Couturier, was playing for the International Hockey League's Phoenix Roadrunners. Following his father's retirement, the family moved to Bathurst, New Brunswick, where his father became general manager of the Acadie–Bathurst Titan of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Couturier calls the city home. Drummondville had the second overall pick in the 2008 QMJHL Entry Draft, picked Couturier after defenseman Brandon Gormley was selected by the Moncton Wildcats. Couturier joined Drummondville for the 2008–09 season and helped the team win their first President's Cup as QMJHL champions, he was tenth on the team in points during the regular season. In 2009–10, Couturier stepped forward to lead the QMJHL in points.
Nicolas Deschamps had scored fewer goals. Teammate Gabriel Dumont was the leading QMJHL goalscorer while Couturier was fourth in the goalscoring race. In the 2010 playoffs, Drummondville advanced to the semi-finals before being eliminated by the eventual champions, the Moncton Wildcats. Couturier was third on his team behind Dumont and Chris DiDomenico. In 2010–11, Couturier had a bout with mononucleosis over the off-season, a condition that takes a year to recover from. Despite this setback, Couturier once again had an impressive year. Couturier matched the 96 points he scored the year before in 10 fewer games, leaving him fourth overall in QMJHL scoring, while having the highest points per game of any draft eligible CHL player. In the playoffs, Drummondville advanced to the second round, before being eliminated in seven games by the Gatineau Olympiques, who would continue on to the President's Cup final. Couturier finished the playoffs with 11 points in 10 games, his 2010–11 campaign resulted in him being named to the QMHJL First All-Star team, as well as winning the Michel Brière Memorial Trophy as the league MVP and the Mike Bossy Trophy as the best professional prospect in the QMJHL.
Couturier was drafted eighth overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. The Flyers acquired the pick via trade that sent Jeff Carter to the Columbus Blue Jackets in return for Jakub Voráček and the Blue Jackets' first- and third-round selections. Couturier signed a three-year, entry-level contract on September 21, 2011. Couturier made an impression in training camp and started the 2011–12 season with the Flyers receiving ice time on the penalty kill, he earned his first point in the NHL in his third game on October 12 against the Vancouver Canucks with a primary assist on a goal by Jakub Voráček. Couturier scored his first NHL goal in his fifth game on October 18, 2011, against Craig Anderson of the Ottawa Senators in a 7–2 win, he was one of the youngest players to participate in the NHL All-Star Game festivities, named on the rookie team and participating in the skills competition. During the Flyers' opening-round playoff series against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Couturier was tasked with shutting down Art Ross Trophy winner Evgeni Malkin.
Couturier earned much praise for his play, holding Malkin to one strength point while Couturier was on the ice during the series, scoring his first career hat-trick, becoming the second-youngest player to score a hat-trick in a playoff game, adding an assist in a four-point performance during game two of the series. Teammate Jaromír Jágr compared Couturier to Hockey Hall of Famer Ron Francis. To start the 2017–18 season, head coach Dave Hakstol placed Couturier on the top line with Claude Giroux and Jakub Voráček; this move helped Couturier gain confidence and as the season progressed, he improved his offensive play. On March 20, 2018, Couturier recorded his 100th career NHL goal, becoming the seventh player from his draft class to reach that milestone. Couturier was awarded the Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy for most improved player at the end of the regular season after he recorded a career-high 76 points, he was awarded the Yanick Dupre Class Guy Memorial Award as most sportsmanlike player and the Gene Hart Memorial Award.
His offensive and defensive success helped the Flyers to the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs and earned him a nomination for the Frank J. Selke Trophy for the first time in his career, he finished second in the voting to Anže Kopitar. In practice before Game 4 of the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs, Couturier collided with teammate Radko Gudas, forcing him to miss Game 4. Upon his return, after missing just one game, Couturier scored the game-winning goal with just over a minute to play and added an assist in Game 5. In Game 6, he tallied three goals and two assists, totalling seven points in the two games following his return, his hat-trick in Game 6 was the second of his career in the playoffs, as his first was in the 2012 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against Pittsburgh. After a series-ending 8–5 defeat in Game 6, it was announced Couturier tore his MCL in practice in his collision with Gudas, yet still continued to play in the playoffs. On August 22, 2018, during the off-season, Couturier suffered a knee injury unrelated to the injury in the playoffs of the previous season, keeping him out four weeks.
On October 9, Couturier was named an alternate captain fo
Michael Dean Bossy or, according to some sources, Michael Jean Bossy is a Canadian former ice hockey player who played for the New York Islanders for his entire career and was a crucial part of their four-year reign as Stanley Cup champions in the early 1980s. Among many other remarkable achievements, he was the only player in NHL history to score consecutive Stanley Cup winning goals and the only player to record four game-winning goals in one series, he is the NHL's all-time leader in average goals scored per regular season game, holds the NHL's third highest all-time average points scored per regular season game, is one of only five players to score 50 goals in 50 games. In 2017 Bossy was named one of the'100 Greatest NHL Players' in history; as a youth, Bossy played in the 1969 Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament with a minor ice hockey team from Montreal. He started his junior career with Quebec Major Junior Hockey League at the age of 15. Despite scoring 309 goals in four seasons, he was considered a timid player by NHL scouts.
In the 1977 NHL Amateur Draft, he was passed over by twelve teams, with the New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs ignoring him twice. However, the New York Islanders made him their first choice, 15th overall. General manager Bill Torrey was torn at first between taking Dwight Foster. Bossy was known as a scorer who could not check, while Foster could check but was inferior offensively. Coach Al Arbour persuaded Torrey to pick Bossy, figuring it was easier to teach a scorer how to check. Bossy was placed on a line with Bryan Trottier and Clark Gillies, a combination that would come to be known as The Trio Grande, replacing Billy Harris on a line, called the "LILCO line". Bossy boldly predicted, he made good on his promise, scoring a then-record 53 goals as a rookie in the 1977–78 season, won the Calder Memorial Trophy for rookie of the year, was named a Second Team All-Star. Many thought it would be impossible to duplicate Maurice Richard's 50 in 50, set thirty-six years earlier. In the 1980–81 season, Bossy became only the second player to score 50 goals in 50 games.
This was hyped by the hockey press as he was in an unofficial competition with Charlie Simmer of the Los Angeles Kings to see who could first accomplish the 50 in 50 milestone since Richard. Both players were involved in their 50th game, with Simmer at 46 and Bossy at 48, with Simmer getting a hat trick to bring his total to 49 goals in 50. Making it dramatic, Bossy was scoreless for much of the game but found the net twice within the last five minutes of his 50th game. Richard was on hand to congratulate Bossy for this achievement. Bossy finished the season with 68 goals in 79 games. Bossy was known for being able to score goals in remarkable fashion, the most incredible in the 1982 Stanley Cup Finals against the Vancouver Canucks when, up-ended by a check from Tiger Williams and flying several feet in the air, parallel to the ice, Bossy nonetheless managed to hook the puck with his stick and score. Bossy was noted for his clean play, never resorting to fighting, winning the Lady Byng Trophy for gentlemanly play three times: 1983, 1984, 1986.
Bossy has harboured some animosity towards Wayne Gretzky and the Edmonton Oilers, stating that the Islanders got little recognition for their dynasty compared to the Canadiens or Oilers. Bossy complained "I do a lot of promoting for how good were... We never got one millionth of the recognition. We had a low-key organization, they didn't want guys doing too much. People don't talk about us in the first mention of great teams." During Gretzky's interview with the New York Post in 1993, he praised Bossy as the best right-winger to play, saying that their scoring totals would have been higher if the two had played together. Bossy's response in the Post was not complimentary, as he pointed out that their playing styles were different, said that Trottier was the best centre in hockey. Gretzky did not comment on that at the time. In 1982, Bossy set a scoring record for right-wingers with 147 points while winning the Stanley Cup and Conn Smythe Trophy. However, far more attention was given to Gretzky who not only won the Hart Memorial Trophy and Art Ross Trophy, but shattered scoring records with an unheard of 212 points and 92 goals.
Bossy aspired to be the best player of his era but fell short, as the Hart and Art Ross Trophies were two of the awards that eluded Bossy during his career, going to Guy Lafleur and Gretzky. Although the Islanders swept the Oilers in the 1983 final to win a fourth consecutive championship and his Oilers still received the most attention; the Islanders made a fifth straight Stanley Cup final in 1984 but they were outmatched by the Oilers who defeated them 4–1. Bossy, who had scored 8 goals after the first three rounds of the playoffs, was silenced in the finals series. Afterwards, the Islanders declined, while injuries took their toll on Bossy's back, he was still managed to score 38 goals. He
The Moncton Wildcats are a junior ice hockey team in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League from Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. The franchise was granted for the 1995–96 season, known as the Moncton Alpines for one season, as the Wildcats since; the team played at the Moncton Coliseum from 1995 until 2018, moved into the Avenir Centre for the 2018–19 season. After winning the 2005–06 QMJHL championship, the team hosted the 2006 Memorial Cup; the Wildcats won the 2009–10 QMJHL championship. Which sent the team to compete in the 2010 Memorial Cup in Manitoba, they were eliminated from contention after going winless in the round robin portion of the tournament. The Moncton Alpines joined the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League in the wake of successful expansion to Halifax, Nova Scotia, for the 1995–96 season, they played for one season under the ownership of racing driver John Graham and coached by Lucien DeBlois. However, the Alpines struggled mightily both off the ice; the team struggled to attract fans.
There was some discussion of folding or moving the team, but instead the franchise was purchased by Robert Irving on May 28, 1996. On June 19, 1996, the team was renamed to the Moncton Wildcats and the new uniforms and logo were unveiled; the Wildcats' first game took place on September 1996, in front of 7,506 fans. They won 9-6 over the Victoriaville Tigres; the team finished 16 -- 52 -- 2 for last place. The first few years of the Wildcats in Moncton featured a gradual improvement in the team's fortunes as more teams were added to the Maritimes and junior hockey took hold in the region; the 1999–2000 team dominated with a 44−20−5−3 record. In the playoffs the team steamrolled to the QMJHL semi-final against Rimouski. Injuries robbed the Wildcats of Simon Laliberte and Mirko Murovic, but the final blow to the Wildcats came just before the semi-final started, when team leading scorer Jonathan Roy was diagnosed with cancer; the off-ice distractions took Moncton lost the series in five games. Roy would beat cancer and went on to a pro career in the minor pro and senior ranks.
The next few seasons featured more rebuilding. In 2002–03, Corey Crawford's goaltending and Steve Bernier's 101 points led the Wildcats to a 37−20−10−5 record. In the playoffs, they fell in the quarter-final four games to two against the Quebec Remparts. At the NHL Draft Steve Bernier was selected 16th Overall by San Jose, goalie Corey Crawford by Chicago in the 2nd Round, Nathan Saunders by Anaheim in the 4th Round. In 2003–04, Corey Crawford set a team record for wins with 35, 4 players had 30+ goal seasons: Steve Bernier with 36, Mathieu Bétournay with 33, Konstantin Zakharov with 33, Mārtiņš Karsums with 30. In the first Round, Moncton defeated the Baie-Comeau Drakkar in four games. In the quarter-final, they beat the PEI Rocket four games to two. In the semifinal, they defeated arch-rival Rimouski Océanic four games to one. In the President's Cup Final for the first time, Moncton lost to the Gatineau Olympiques four games to one. In 2004–05, the "Sidney Crosby Show" was selling out buildings everywhere, with the NHL lockout, Corey Crawford stayed in Moncton.
Helped by his backup, Jean-Christophe Blanchard, they finished with a combined 2.47 GAA, best in the QMJHL. Steve Bernier again had a 30+ goal season, with 36. Adam Pineault had 26 goals, while Bruce Graham chipped in 23, Stéphane Goulet finished with 22. Nathan Saunders set a new club record with 198 penalty minutes, finishing with a career record of 794 PIMS. In the playoffs, the Cats took Drummondville in the first round, four games to two before being knocked out by the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies four games to two. In 2005, it was announced; the team hired former NHL coach of the year Ted Nolan, acquired players such as Keith Yandle, various rookies. The team's slogan for 2005–06 was "New Coach, New Team, New Attitude"; the Wildcats finished in first place in the league, going 52-15-0-3 for 107 points and winning the Jean Rougeau Trophy for the first time in club history. The Cats acquired Victoriaville Tigres goalie Josh Tordjman halfway through the season, as well as Luc Bourdon from the Val-d'Or Foreurs.
They defeated Victoriaville four games to one in the first round, did the same to the Halifax Mooseheads. The Wildcats defeated the Gatineau Olympiques four games to one in the third round. To return to the President's Cup, this time against Patrick Roy's Quebec Remparts. In Game 1, Moncton beat the Remparts 4-3 in overtime; some more OT heroics resulted in a 3-2 win in Game 2. Quebec battled back for Game 3, winning 3-1; the Remparts tied the series at 2-2 with a 4-3 OT victory in Game 4. In Game 5, Moncton again used OT to get by Quebec 3-2. In Game 6, in front of a sold-out Moncton Coliseum crowd, Moncton took the trophy home, winning 3-2. In the Memorial Cup against the Remparts, Vancouver Giants and Peterborough Petes, Moncton finished second in the round-robin after defeating Peterborough and Vancouver but losing to Quebec; the Wildcats defeated the Giants in the semi-final, but lost to the Remparts 6-2 in the Memorial Cup final. Nolan went on to an NHL coaching job with the New York Islanders, along with assistant coach Danny Flynn.
He was replaced by another coach with an NHL resume in John Torchetti. Torchetti led a young team to a 39-25-4-2 record before losing to the Halifax Mooseheads four games to three in the first round of the playoffs. Torchetti moved on to accept a post as associate coach with the Chicago Blackhawks; the Wildcats brought Flynn back as their new head coach and director of hockey operations for 2007–08. Flynn traded away top veterans Phil Mangan, Matt Marquardt and Murdock MacLellan at the Christma
There have been two junior ice hockey franchises known as the Quebec Remparts that played in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The first edition played from 1969 to 1985. Both franchises were based out of Quebec City, Canada; the current team plays at Videotron Centre. The team is named after the Ramparts of Quebec City; the Remparts have developed notable National Hockey League players, including Simon Gagné, Kevin Lowe, Mike Ribeiro, Antoine Vermette, Marc-Édouard Vlasic and Hall of Famers Michel Goulet and Guy Lafleur. The original Quebec Remparts team was founded in 1969 by a group of investors who purchased the assets of the junior Quebec Aces team; some of the new owners included Paul Dumont, Gérard Bolduc. The Remparts took up residence in the same arena as the Aces in the Colisée de Québec; the Remparts were finalists for the George Richardson Memorial Trophy in 1969–70, eastern Canadian champions in 1970–71. It was this team, which featured future Hockey Hall of Famer Guy Lafleur, that won a Memorial Cup championship in 1971.
The team won the President's Cup five times. Gilles Courteau was the general manager of the Remparts from 1980 to 1985. After the 1984–85 season, the team went into dormancy for three seasons before being resurrected. After returning to play, then-sponsored by "Le Collège Français", the team moved to Longueuil to become the Longueuil Collège Français; the team played for three seasons before moving to Verdun in 1991 to become the Verdun Collège Français. The franchise ceased operations in 1994; the current Remparts franchise was granted for the 1990–91 season and was known as the Beauport Harfangs, a suburb in the Quebec City metropolitan area. In 1997 the team moved to Quebec City, playing two seasons at PEPS on the campus of Laval University between 1997 and 1999. In 1999 the team moved into the Colisée de Québec, they are considered one of the most popular Canadian Hockey League teams, as they draw over 11,000 spectators per game. Similar to the National Football League's Cleveland Browns, the team claims the history and records of the original Remparts.
On May 28, 2006, the Remparts won the Memorial Cup. Then-Head Coach Patrick Roy became the seventh coach to win the Cup in his first year as head coach, the first to do so since Claude Julien of the Hull Olympiques in 1997, it was the first time in Memorial Cup history that the finals involved two teams from the QMJHL. Quebec won the Cup without winning a League championship and without hosting the event, another first in Memorial Cup history. On November 27, 2014, the Remparts were sold to Quebecor for an estimated price between $20 million and $25 million; the Remparts were chosen to be the host of the 2015 Memorial Cup. They defeated the Rimouski Océanic in tie-breaker 5-2, but got eliminated by the Kelowna Rockets in the semi-finals 9-3; the team moved to Centre Vidéotron on September 12, 2015. Original RempartsMichel Goulet, Guy Lafleur have been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Modern Remparts 4 Guy Lafleur 12 Simon Gagné 22 Alexander Radulov 44 Marc-Édouard Vlasic CHRC Quebec Remparts Official Site QMJHL Arena Guide profile
The Florida Panthers are a professional ice hockey team based in the Miami metropolitan area. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League; the team's local broadcasting rights has been held by Fox Sports Florida since 1996. The team played their home games at Miami Arena, before moving to the BB&T Center in 1998. Located in Sunrise, the Panthers are the southernmost team in the NHL; the Panthers began playing in the 1993–94 NHL season. The team has made one appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals, in 1996, the only season in which the Panthers have won a playoff series losing the Finals to the Colorado Avalanche; the team advanced to the Stanley Cup playoffs for the second time in 12 years in 2012, but were eliminated in seven games in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals by the New Jersey Devils, who won the Eastern Conference championship that season. The club is affiliated with one minor league team, the Springfield Thunderbirds of the American Hockey League.
Blockbuster Video magnate Wayne Huizenga was awarded an NHL franchise for Miami on December 10, 1992, the same day The Walt Disney Company earned the rights to start a team in Anaheim that would become the Mighty Ducks. At the time, Huizenga owned both the newly founded Florida Marlins of Major League Baseball and a share of the National Football League's Miami Dolphins; the entry fee was $50 million, but despite fellow Florida team Tampa Bay Lightning starting play the year before, the NHL did not consider it to be a case of territory infringement. Huizenga announced the team would play at the Miami Arena, sharing the building with the National Basketball Association's Miami Heat, until a new arena was built. Offices for the team were only established in June 1993, while vice president of business operations Dean Jordan conceded that "none of the business people, myself included, knew anything about hockey." On April 20, 1993, a press conference in Ft. Lauderdale announced that the team would be named Florida Panthers, with former New York Islanders general manager Bill Torrey as president and Bobby Clarke as general manager.
The team is named for the Florida panther, an endangered species of large cat endemic to the nearby Everglades region. Once the logos and uniforms were unveiled on June 15, the team announced its financial commitment to the panther preservation cause. Huizenga held the Panthers trademark since 1991, when he purchased it from a group of Tampa investors who sought to create an MLB team in the Tampa Bay area; the new franchise would join the NHL for participation in the 1993–94 season, along with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. The Panthers' and Ducks' roster was filled up in both the expansion draft and the 1993 NHL Entry Draft in June 1993, hosted by Quebec City; the Panthers' first major stars were New York Rangers goaltender castoff John Vanbiesbrouck, rookie Rob Niedermayer and forward Scott Mellanby, who scored 30 goals in Florida's inaugural season. Their first game was a 4–4 tie on the road against the Chicago Blackhawks, while their first win was a 2–0 shutout of the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Thunderdome before a then-NHL record crowd of 27,227.
The Panthers had one of the most successful first seasons of any expansion team, finishing just two points below.500 and narrowly missing out on the final 1994 playoff spot in the East. Their first-year success was attributed to the "trap defense" that first-year coach Roger Neilson implemented; this conservative style was criticized by NHL teams. While the team executives expected the audience to consist of "snowbird" Canadians living in Florida, the Floridians soon embraced the Panthers. Helped by Miami's other teams having middling performances, the club averaged 94% capacity at the 14,500-seat Miami Arena, managed to sell 8,500 season tickets in 100 days. In August 1994, general manager Clarke left to work for the Philadelphia Flyers, while Bryan Murray was brought in from the Detroit Red Wings as his replacement. After another close brush with the playoffs, finishing the lockout-shortened 1994–95 season again in ninth, Neilson was fired following an argument with Murray regarding Ed Jovanovski, whom the Panthers chose as the number one overall pick at the 1994 NHL Entry Draft.
Doug MacLean, the team's player development director, was promoted to coach. The team acquired Ray Sheppard from the San Jose Sharks at the NHL trade deadline and looked toward the playoffs for the first time. A unusual goal celebration developed in Miami during the 1995–96 season. On the night of the Panthers' 1995–96 home opener, a rat scurried across the team's locker room. Scott Mellanby reacted by "one-timing" the rat against the wall; that night, he scored two goals, which Vanbiesbrouck quipped was "a rat trick." Two nights as the story found its way into the world, a few fans threw rubber rats on the ice in celebration of a goal. The rubber rat count went from 16 for the third home game to over 2,000 during the playoffs. In the 1996 playoffs, as the fourth seed in the East, the Panthers faced the Boston Bruins in the first round and won in five games. Bill Lindsay's famous series-clinching goal is still a trademark image for the incredible run the third-year franchise went on; the Panthers went on to upset the top-seeded Philadelphia Flyers in six games followed by the second-seeded Pittsburgh Penguins in seven to reach the Stanley Cup Finals against the Colorado Avalanche, another team making its first Finals appearan
2012 NHL Entry Draft
The 2012 NHL Entry Draft was the 50th NHL Entry Draft. The draft was held June 22 -- 2012, at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, it was the first time. The top three picks were Nail Yakupov going to the Edmonton Oilers, Ryan Murray going to the Columbus Blue Jackets, Alex Galchenyuk going to the Montreal Canadiens. Ice hockey players born between January 1, 1992, September 15, 1994, were eligible for selection in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Additionally, un-drafted, non-North American players over the age of 20 are eligible for the draft; the NHL draft lottery enables a team to move up to four spots ahead in the draft. Thus, only the bottom five teams were eligible to receive the number one draft pick. Beginning with the 2013 NHL Entry Draft all fourteen teams not qualifying for the Stanley Cup playoffs will have a "weighted" chance at winning the first overall selection; the Edmonton Oilers won the 2012 draft lottery that took place on April 10, 2012, thus moving them up from the second pick to the first pick.
Source: NHL Central Scouting final ranking. NotesThe Carolina Hurricanes' first-round pick went to the Pittsburgh Penguins as the result of a trade on June 22, 2012, that sent Jordan Staal to Carolina in exchange for Brandon Sutter, Brian Dumoulin and this pick; the Colorado Avalanche's first-round pick went to the Washington Capitals as the result of a trade on July 1, 2011, that sent Semyon Varlamov to Colorado in exchange for a second-round pick in either 2012 or 2013 and this pick. The Calgary Flames' first-round pick went to the Buffalo Sabres as the result of a trade on June 22, 2012, that sent Nashville's first-round pick in 2012 and Buffalo's second-round pick in 2012 to Calgary for this pick; the Detroit Red Wings' first-round pick went to the Tampa Bay Lightning as the result of a trade on February 21, 2012, that sent Kyle Quincey to Detroit in exchange for Sebastien Piche and this pick. The Nashville Predators' first-round pick went to the Calgary Flames as the result of a trade on June 22, 2012, that sent Calgary's first-round pick in 2012 to Buffalo in exchange for Buffalo's second-round pick in 2012 and this pick.
Buffalo acquired this pick as the result of a trade on February 27, 2012, that sent Paul Gaustad and Buffalo's fourth-round draft pick in 2013 to Nashville in exchange for this pick. NotesThe Minnesota Wild's second-round pick went to the Nashville Predators as the result of a trade on June 15, 2012, that sent Anders Lindback, Kyle Wilson and Nashville's seventh-round pick in 2012 to Tampa Bay in exchange for Sebastien Caron, Philadelphia's second-round pick in 2012, Tampa Bay's third-round pick in 2013 and this pick. Tampa Bay acquired this pick as the result of a trade on February 16, 2012, that sent Dominic Moore and a seventh-round pick in 2012 to San Jose in exchange for this pick. San Jose acquired this pick as the result of a trade on June 24, 2011, that sent Devin Setoguchi, Charlie Coyle and a first-round pick in 2011 to Minnesota in exchange for Brent Burns and this pick; the Buffalo Sabres' second-round pick went to the Calgary Flames as the result of a trade on June 22, 2012, that sent Calgary's first-round pick in 2012 to Buffalo in exchange for Nashville's first-round pick in 2012 and this pick.
The Calgary Flames' second-round pick went to the Buffalo Sabres as the result of a trade on June 25, 2011, that sent Chris Butler and Paul Byron to Calgary in exchange for Robyn Regehr, Ales Kotalik and this pick. The Ottawa Senators' second-round pick went to the Philadelphia Flyers as a result of a trade on June 22, 2012, that sent Sergei Bobrovsky to Columbus in exchange for Vancouver's fourth-round pick in 2012, Phoenix's fourth round pick in 2013, this pick. Columbus acquired this pick as a result of a trade on February 22, 2012, that sent Antoine Vermette to Phoenix in exchange for Curtis McElhinney, a conditional fourth-round pick in 2013 and this pick. Phoenix acquired this pick as a result of a trade on December 17, 2011, that sent Kyle Turris to Ottawa in exchange for David Rundblad and this pick; the Washington Capitals' second-round pick went to the Minnesota Wild as the result of a trade on February 24, 2012, that sent Marek Zidlicky to New Jersey in exchange for Kurtis Foster, Nick Palmieri, Stephane Veilleux, a conditional third-round pick in 2013 and this pick.
New Jersey acquired this pick as the result of a trade on February 28, 2011, that sent Jason Arnott to Washington in exchange for Dave Steckel and this pick. The San Jose Sharks' second-round pick went to the Carolina Hurricanes as the result of a trade on February 18, 2011, that sent Ian White to San Jose in exchange for this pick; the Philadelphia Flyers' second-round pick went to the Nashville Predators as the result of a trade that sent Anders Lindback, Kyle Wilson and Nashville's seventh-round pick in 2012 to Tampa Bay in exchange for Sebastien Caron, Minnesota's second-round pick in 2012, Tampa Bay's third-round pick in 2013 and this pick. Tampa Bay acquired this pick as the result of a trade on July 1, 2010, that sent Andrej Meszaros to Philadelphia in exchange for this pick; the Nashville Predators' second-round pick went to the Montreal Canadiens as the result of a trade on February 17, 2012, that sent Hal Gill and a conditional fifth-round pick in 2013 to Nashville in exchange for Blake Geoffrion, Robert Slaney and this pick.
The Florida Panthers' second-round pick went to the Tampa Bay Lightning as the result of a trade on February