The team made the announcement Saturday. Gallant spent parts of three seasons as coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets from 2003 through 2007 and has been an assistant coach with the Montreal Canadiens for the past two years.
He also coached the Saint John Sea Dogs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, where his top player was Jonathan Huberdeau, who now plays for the Panthers and is considered one of the franchise's keys to rebuilding.
Gallant will be formally introduced by the Panthers on Monday. He will become Florida's eighth coach in a span of 11 seasons.
I downplayed the first one because I thought it's just a hockey game. We just want to win the game; it's against our rival and we want the two points. I downplayed it, but now having gone through the first one I look back and say, 'Geez, that was really cool.' I think as I've grown a bit older I've got a lot more appreciation for what we're allowed to do every day.
— Capitals forward Brooks Laich on the 2015 NHL Bridgestone Winter Classic, the second one of his career after 2011 in Pittsburgh