This is a public service announcement
The Florida Panthers are awesome
It's a weird year, obviously. The NHL didn't start until January. We were right in the throws of the NFL playoffs. Then we ran into a March Madness that everyone was dying for because the tournament got canceled. Then we had opening day for baseball. Now it's Masters week. I wouldn't blame many of you for not even knowing there was a hockey season happening at all. No fans. New divisions that are weird. It's a lost season in many respects.
Having said that...there's always money to be made and fun to be had and the Panthers are providing both of them. First things first...any time you can get the #1 team in the league at 22-1 because people aren't paying attention you should do it responsibly. That's what I did yesterday
So we are sprinkling like an afternoon shower on South Beach now, but as soon as they get by Carolina in the first round of the divisional playoffs we are going to hammer them. I believe in this group. They've got two TOP end offensive players with Barkov and Huberdeau. They're getting good goaltending from Drieger while they wait for Bob to find his game that is costing the Panthers $10M/season and for Spencer Knight to emerge as the guy. This team is so fun to watch. They play fast. They play hard. They're unselfish. They're getting MAJOR contributions journeyman type guys and Joel is getting the absolute most out of them. They are finally playing Joel's way and it's a beautiful thing to see. They also have a SHIT ton of cap space that they can use to add a little depth if they want because maybe Zito knows he should strike now while the iron is hot for this group. If they sign their top prospect, Anton Lundell, then they've got two great playoff type centers like Toews who play 200ft and make everyone better.
This is what we expected when Joel left for Sunrise, FL. We expected him to bet ponies, smoke cigars, and win a ton of games. I am actually happy that it is coming together for him down there and I hope this success allows the NHL to properly judge if South Florida is a viable hockey market because they've literally never been good except for one season. A little sustained success with some star power goes a long way. If they get bigger crowds next year when things are straight and people can go to games, great. If not, move them to Quebec and everyone is happy.
In the meantime...I am betting them basically every single night because there's crazy value there and then you just sprinkle. Feel the rain on your skin.