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NOTEBOOK: Bjugstad's Linemates; New Locker Room

Storylines heading into today's preseason doubleheader.

by Jameson Olive JamesonCoop / FloridaPanthers.com

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. - As the Florida Panthers prepare to begin their seven-game preseason, head coach Gerard Gallant wants each and every one of the 50-plus players attending this year's training camp to know that there are jobs to be won in the coming weeks.

"There's spots available," Gallant said after Sunday's practice at the Panthers IceDen in Coral Springs. "You look at some of our players, and there's people fighting for jobs. That's what you want every year, nobody gets a free shot at a job. Guys come here and work hard and earn jobs. There are probably 10 guys in line for three or four jobs."

Now, before you begin to shuffle lines in your head, Gallant went out of his way to also make it clear that, although his lineup for the upcoming season isn't set in stone, the club's top-two forward lines from last season "aren't going anywhere."

So where does that leave the rest of the lineup?

Well, if the first and second lines are to remain intact, the first big question marks can then be found to the left and right of third-line center Nick Bjugstad, who lost both of his linemates from last year's playoffs - Jiri Hudler and Teddy Purcell - to free agency.

"I'm not too stressed out," Bjugstad said with a chuckle. "I think everyone is trying to find linemates. It's not too set in stone, you know, who's sitting where and what position guys are. The first two lines look great to me, but I'm saying that everyone is trying to find out who can play with each other. We'll see what happens."

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Cats and Coffee: Preseason Starts with Doubleheader

Your weekly look ahead at everything #FlaPanthers

by Jameson Olive JamesonCoop / FloridaPanthers.com

Good morning and welcome to "Cats & Coffee," a weekly segment presented by Community Coffee in which we get you caffeinated with an exciting look at the week ahead for the Florida Panthers.

The Florida Panthers will make their return to the BB&T Center this week, kicking off their seven-game preseason schedule with an exciting doubleheader against the Nashville Predators on Tuesday.

"It's more about guys trying to prove themselves and getting their feet wet," center Nick Bjugstad said of the preseason. "It's a lot of guys first time with the organization. Throwing on that jersey will be fun, especially with the new logo. It'll be a lot of fun to play again."

The back-to-back contests will be played at 3:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., respectively, with any ticket purchased to either of the games also granting access to the other. If you are interested in attending, please click here. 

"A lot of guys will be playing in those games," head coach Gerard Gallant said. "Kids deserve those chances. They like to play in exhibitions games. It'll be fun."

Following the doubleheader, the Panthers will head across the state to visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday, Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Amalie Arena. Then, after a brief stint back in Sunrise, the team will head to London, Ontario, for a special game against the Dallas Stars on Sunday, Oct. 2 at Budweiser Gardens, home of the Ontario Hockey League's London Knights.

"We are very excited to showcase Panthers hockey outside of South Florida to a great hockey town like London," Panthers Executive Chairman Peter Luukko said. "Budweiser Gardens is a first class facility and an excellent venue for fans to watch two exciting, 2015-16 division-winning teams, Florida and Dallas face off. It is sure to be a terrific event for both the players and the city of London."

Budweiser Gardens has previously hosted a number NHL teams through the years for preseason games, with the Philadelphia Flyers and Toronto Maple Leafs most recently playing an exhibition contest there on Sept. 22, 2014.

Tickets can be purchased at BudweiserGardens.com or by phone at 1-866-455-2849.

 

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Statement from the Florida Panthers on José Fernández

by Florida Panthers @FlaPanthersPR / FloridaPanthers.com
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Cats Embracing Pressure After Record-Setting Season

by Jameson Olive JamesonCoop / FloridaPanthers.com

SUNRISE, Fla. - The Florida Panthers are ready for their close up.

In a day filled with medical tests, photo shoots and endless interviews, the only thing shining brighter than the flash of the cameras was the smiles etched onto each player's face as they made their way through the Media Day gauntlet at the BB&T Center on Thursday.

"We're ready to get going," center Nick Bjugstad said. "I'm honestly getting sick of playing shinny hockey. I'm ready to get going and play some real hockey, get training camp going. We'll have a hard working training camp and then be ready to go."

After racking up a franchise-record 103 points and winning the Atlantic Division last season, the Panthers suddenly find themselves in uncharted waters as they attempt to follow-up last year's historic performance with an even better showing in 2016-17. No longer one of the league's best-kept secrets, Florida is no longer viewed as a team on the rise, but rather one that has already arrived and ready to compete for a Stanley Cup.

 

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Panthers Beat Bolts in Rookie Tournament Finale

Rookies Finish Tourney Undefeated

by Jameson Olive @JamesonCoop / FloridaPanthers.com

The Florida Panthers defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2 on Tuesday afternoon at the Panthers IceDen, capping off a perfect rookie tournament showing in which they outscored their opponents by a combined score of 14-8.

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Florida Panthers Announce Training Camp Roster

On-Ice Sessions Begin Sept. 23 at Panthers IceDen in Coral Springs,FL

NHL.com

Florida Panthers President of Hockey Operations Dale Tallon announced today that 51 players (27 forwards, 17 defensemen, 7 goaltenders) will attend the club's training camp which will open with medical and physical testing on Thursday, Sept. 22. The Panthers will hold their first on-ice practice of training camp on Friday, Sept. 23, beginning at 9:45 a.m. at the Panthers IceDen in Coral Springs, FL.

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Malgin's hat trick leads Panthers to victory

Cats win their second of the Tournament In Coral Springs

by Jameson Olive @JamesonCoop / NHL.com

19-year-old Malgin scored three goals to help lift the Panthers to a 5-2 victory over the Washington Capitals in front of another capacity crowd at the Panthers IceDen on Sunday night, improving Florida's overall record in the annual rookie tournament to a perfect 2-0.

 

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Poised Panthers top Preds in Rookie Tourney Opener

Poised Panthers top Predators in Rookie Tourney Opener

by Jameson Olive @JamesonCoop / Florida Panthers

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. - The Florida Panthers are off to a hot start at this year's Rookie Tournament, defeating the Nashville Predators 6-3 in front of a packed house at the Panthers IceDen on Saturday night.

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Rats Roundup - Jerseys, Rookie Tournament and More

Your weekly roundup of everything Panthers

by Kyle Morrison / FloridaPanthers.com

This weekend is a hockey weekend.

That's right, come on out to the Panthers IceDen in Coral Springs for this year's rookie tournament this weekend for some quality free hockey. The Panthers will play host to the Nashville Predators, Tampa Bay Lightning and Washington Capitals for the tournament, and the teams are in action tomorrow, Sunday and Tuesday.

Click here for a roster, and below is the full rookie tournament schedule:

Saturday, Sept. 17

Washington vs. Tampa Bay - 2:30 p.m.

Nashville at Florida - 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 18

Nashville vs. Tampa Bay - 2:30 p.m.

Washington at Florida - 6:00 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 20

Nashville vs. Washington - 10:00 a.m.

Tampa Bay at Florida - 1:30 p.m.

*Times are subject to change

JERSEYS ON SALE THIS WEEK

"But, FloridaPanthers.com," you may be thinking, "What am I supposed to do on Monday?"

We've got you covered there, too. Come to the BB&T Center between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. for some special hours at Pantherland! Pick up new gear and merchandise. And, if you pre-ordered a jersey, it'll be available for pickup.

Here are the full Pantherland special hours.

Monday 9/19: 3 p.m.-8 p.m.

Tuesday 9/20: 5-8 p.m.

Wednesday 9/21: 5-8 p.m.

Thursday 9/22: 5-8 p.m.

Friday 9/23: 5-8 p.m.

 

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2016 World Cup of Hockey Preview

Looking at the Cats in action in the World Cup of Hockey

by Jameson Olive JamesonCoop / FloridaPanthers.com

Before they begin their quest to capture a second consecutive Atlantic Division title, several of the Florida Panthers' rising stars must first take on a much larger opponent - the world.

The 2016 World Cup of Hockey officially gets underway on Saturday, with more than 150 of the best hockey players in the world ready to battle for international bragging rights in the recently revitalized best-on-best competition.

The tournament will take place over a two-week period, from Sept. 17 - Oct. 1, and all games will be played at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, home of the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs.

The eight teams participating in this year's World Cup are Team Canada, Team Czech Republic, Team Finland, Team Russia, Team Sweden, Team USA, Team Europe and Team North America.

These teams have been split into two Groups, Group A and Group B, for the Preliminary Round (Sept. 17-22), when each team will play its three Group opponents in a round-robin format.

The top two finishers in Group A and Group B will advance to the Semifinals (Sept. 24-25), where the first-place team from each Group will face an elimination game against the second-place team from the other Group. The two Semifinal winners will then meet in the Final, a best-of-three series on Sept. 27, Sept. 29 and, if necessary, Oct. 1.

This tournament isn't like any you've ever seen before, however, as traditional international powerhouses such as Canada and the United States will face off against a pair of new and exciting multi-national super teams in Team Europe and Team North America.

Team Europe is comprised of players from all other European countries outside of Finland, the Czech Republic, Sweden and Russia, while Team North America consists of the best players from the United States and Canada who are 23 or younger as of Oct. 1, 2016.

Aaron Ekblad , Vincent Trocheck , Aleksander Barkov and Jussi Jokinen will be representing the Panthers at this year's World Cup. Trocheck is playing alongside Ekblad on Team North America, while Barkov and Jokinen are both competing for Team Finland.

Panthers head coach Gerard Gallant, who was an All-Star and finalist for the Jack Adams trophy last season, is serving as an assistant coach for Team North America.

With only a few day left until the puck drops, here is everything else that Panthers fans need to know about 2016 World Cup of Hockey:

TEAMS

Group A
Team Canada
Team Czech Republic
Team Europe
Team USA

Group B
Team Finland
Team North America
Team Russia
Team Sweden

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