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1998 OLYMPIAN PANTHERS ON PUB COVER
Three Panthers — John Vanbiesbrouck, Robert Svehla and Esa Tikkanen — represented their respective countries at the 1998 Winter Olympics. Tikkanen’s Finnish team ended up winning the bronze medal that year.
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ALL THINGS RAT
Do you know everything you need to know about the Rat Trick? On October 8, 1995, Opening Night at Miami Arena, Scott Mellanby waited with teammates in the locker room before the game. When a rat crashed the party, Mellanby dispatched it with his hockey stick, then later went on to score two goals that night in a 4-3 victory over the Calgary Flames.
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BEEZER WITHOUT THE HELMET
The Panthers really wanted John Vanbiesbrouck, and “Beezer” didn’t disappoint. During the 1993 NHL Expansion Draft, the Panthers snagged Vanbiesbrouck in the first overall pick. Vanbiesbrouck would be the cornerstone of the expansion team and play his way into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame. But when he arrived in the summer of 1993, the […]
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BOB KUDELSKI ALL-STAR JERSEY, 1994
Bob Kudelski came to the newly established Panthers in a trade in January 1994. He made his presence known and his command of the game earned him a spot on the NHL All-Star Team alongside teammate John Vanbiesbrouck.
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BRIAN SKRUDLAND AUTOGRAPHED JERSEY
Brian Skrudland was the first Panthers captain (1993-1997) and holds a special place in the hearts of fans. Skrudland’s work ethic, John Vanbiesbrouck’s outstanding goaltending and Scott Mellanby’s “Rat Trick” magic were huge components of the team’s early playoffs success.
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COMMEMORATIVE RAT TRICK PUCK, 1995
Panthers fans celebrated a fun piece of hockey history with a commemorative puck for the NHL’s first Rat Trick. On Opening Night 1995, Scott Mellanby scored two goals with the same hockey stick he had used to kill a rat in the locker room pre-game. John Vanbiesbrouck described the feat as a Rat Trick.
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ED JOVANOVSKI’S GAME-USED STICK, 1996-1997
Ed Jovanovski got his start with the Florida Panthers in 1995 just as veterans like Brian Skrudland, John Vanbiesbrouck and Scott Mellanby were turning the team into a powerhouse. “Jovo” used this two-piece composite stick during the 1996-1997 season, when he played 61 games, earned 23 points and headed to the playoffs for the second […]
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EKBLAD MAKES HISTORY
Aaron Ekblad’s selection for the 2016 All-Star Game secured his place in franchise history. The 19-year-old became just one of six Panthers ever selected for consecutive All-Star Games, the others being John Vanbiesbrouck, Viktor Kozlov, Pavel Bure, Sandis Ozolinsh and Roberto Luongo. Out of all the amazing names on that list, Ekblad was the first […]
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FITZPATRICK MAKES THE SAVE, 1993
Mark Fitzpatrick made a save during the first month of Panthers hockey in October 1993. Fitzpatrick started in goal for the first time on Oct. 19 (a 2-2 tie with the LA Kings) and went on to provide critical backup for John Vanbiesbrouck for several seasons, including during the 1996 Stanley Cup Playoffs run. Fitzpatrick […]
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FITZPATRICK’S GAME-USED GOALIE STICK, 1990s
Mark Fitzpatrick was one of the first Panthers goalies, coming to the team in the expansion draft. He appeared in two playoff games in 1996, serving as the backup to John Vanbiesbrouck.
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