Good morning and welcome to "Cats & Coffee," a weekly segment, presented by Koffee Kult, in which we serve up an exciting look at what's on deck for your Florida Panthers. Like our friends at Koffee Kult, this forecast serves up only the best -- so sit back, sip and enjoy our latest brew of news, notes and information!
It's time to clear your schedule for the weekend - the 2019 NHL Draft is finally here.
After some savvy wheeling and dealing, the Florida Panthers are currently slated to make nine - yes, nine - total selections at this week's draft at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, B.C. Round 1 of will take place on Friday, June 21, while Rounds 2-7 will be knocked out on Saturday, June 22.
At last year's draft in Dallas, the Panthers added six prospects to their deepening pool, including a pair of potentially elite-level forwards in Grigori Denisenko (15th overall) and Serron Noel (34th overall) with their first two picks. Since being drafted, both players have earned national praise.
After standing pat at the NHL Draft Lottery in April, Florida enters this year's event with the 13th overall selection for the first time in franchise history. In addition to their first-round choice, they also possess at least one pick in each of the draft's seven rounds, including three in the fourth.
For draft news and articles, check out https://www.nhl.com/panthers/team/draftcentral all week.
"These next few weeks are going to be exciting for us," Panthers President of Hockey Operations & General Manger Dale Tallon recently told The Athletic. "We are taking things day by day and we will keep progressing. We're not moving backward. We are moving forward. Every day is important to us right now because we have to make the right decisions here whether it is in the draft or being aggressive on July 1. We're committed, we're ready and we are willing. All of those good things."
If you want to watch the draft surrounded by other Panthers fans, we've also got you covered. Rather than having one official watch party, bars and restaurants that are part of the "Territory on Tap" program - such as the Funky Buddha Brewery or Bokamper's Bar & Grill -- will give fans a place to tune-in to the draft.
For a full list of locations you can visit, click HERE.
Panthers Selections at the 2019 NHL Draft
Round 1 -- 13th overall
Round 2 -- 52nd overall (via Pittsburgh)
Round 3 -- 69th overall (via Edmonton)
Round 4 -- 104th overall (via Minnesota)
Round 4 -- 106th overall
Round 4 -- 114th overall (via Pittsburgh)
Round 5 -- 137th overall
Round 6 -- 168th overall
Round 7 -- 199th overall
How to Watch (all times ET)
Live on 560 WQAM
Friday, June 21: 8-11 p.m.
Saturday, June 22: 1-3 p.m.
Television Broadcast (all times ET)
Friday, June 21: 8 p.m. (NBCSN, SN, TVAS)
Saturday, June 22: 1 p.m. (NHL Network, SN)
BARKOV GOES FOR BYNG
Before the draft can begin, some hardware needs to be handed out.
The NHL Awards will take place on Wednesday, June 19 in Las Vegas, with everything from the league's MVP (Hart Trophy) to best defenseman (Norris Trophy) being handed out. Heading to Sin City for the third time, Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov is hoping his luck will finally land him his first Lady Byng, an accolade he was previously nominated for in both 2016 and 2018.
Calgary's Sean Monahan and St. Louis' Ryan O'Reilly, who took home the trophy in 2013-14, will join Barkov as finalists for the Lady Byng, which is given out annually to the player "adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability." In reading that description, doesn't that describe Barkov to a T?
Later this week, FloridaPanthers.com will have an article detailing exactly why it's No. 16's time to win the awards. But if you'd like to see for yourself if the third time will be the charm, you can watch all of the awards be handed out by flipping the TV to NBC Sports Network at 8 p.m. ET.
If Barkov does end up finally winning, he will join defenseman Brian Campbell (2011-12) as the only other player to take home the Lady Byng in the franchise's 25-year history.
SECURE YOUR EXPERIENCE
It's always more fun to take in a Panthers game with a group.
Whether you're spending the night out with your family, friends or co-workers, the more hands around you to high five after a breakaway goal or jaw-dropping save, the better. Starting at 10 tickets, group experiences are on sale now for the upcoming and ultra-hyped 2019-20 season.
Aside from being surrounded by good company, a group outing also nets the following:
• Discounted Tickets
• Welcome Message on the Jumbotron
• Access to Exclusive Fan Experiences
• Fundraising Opportunities
• Parking Included in Each Individual Ticket
• & More!
Like most ticket offers, there's benefits to jumping on these tickets sooner rather than later as well. By placing a deposit right now, you'll land a spot on the Panthers priority list, which means that you'll be given first priority to the season's best games and most-desirable seat locations.
So gather a group together and head on over to https://www.nhl.com/panthers/tickets/groups for more information on how to get started.
But, if smaller groups are more your thing, you can sign up for the single-game priority list now HERE.
CATS CLIP OF THE WEEK
To celebrate Father's Day this past Sunday, Panthers players shared their latest texts from dad.
Video: Texts From Dad
CATS IN THE COMMUNITY
On the latest episode of the Territory Talk podcast, FOX Sport Florida's Randy Moller joins Doug Plagens and Jameson Olive to talk about Florida's early options at the 2019 NHL Draft.
COLD COFFEE (IN CASE YOU MISSED IT)
-- The Panthers have found their 2019-20 assistant coaches, including a few familiar faces.
-- Applications are currently open for the 2019-20 Community Champions Grant Program.
-- What are the Panthers 2017 draftees up to these days? Find out here.
-- From undrafted to a first-round pick, Henrik Borgstrom talks about the wild draft journey that eventually led to him becoming a member of the Panthers in 2016.
-- Frank Vatrano penned a player blog about playing with Jack Hughes and Team USA at the 2019 IIHF World Championship.
-- The Panthers had one of their most-diverse draft classes ever in 2018.
-- In an interview with NHL.com, Dale Tallon talks about ramping up for a big offseason.
-- Jonathan Huberdeau knew he'd go early, but the nerves were still there. Find out what was going through the star winger's head the moments before he became a Panther back in 2011.
-- Florida's preseason schedule is here!