SUNRISE, Fla. - The Panthers IceDen announced today that the South Florida Hockey Academy will house its 'AAA' level hockey programs at the Panthers IceDen in Coral Springs, Fla.
"The Panthers IceDen is a premier destination for youth hockey and the community of South Florida," said Panthers IceDen General Manager Keith Fine. "The decision to partner with the South Florida Hockey Academy to operate in the Panthers IceDen is one that mutually benefits the continued expansion of our sport in this area."
South Florida Hockey Academy is an elite hockey academy where each age group competes at the AAA level against North American and European teams. The executive board of SFHA includes coaches and Florida Panthers alumni Olli Jokinen, Radek Dvorak and Tomas Vokoun. Panthers alum Ed Jovanovski serves as the Academy's Head Defense Coach.
"We are proud that our organization's alumni have invested their time and passion to grow our great game in South Florida," said Panthers President of Hockey Operations Dale Tallon. "The Panthers IceDen has done a tremendous job in developing young players through the years, some of whom have gone on to play in the NHL. The inclusion of our alumni's Academy only makes the future of hockey in Florida even brighter."
"South Florida is home to myself and many of those who have played for the Florida Panthers," said Jokinen. "Our mission has been to make South Florida a destination for young hockey players around the world to develop both on and off of the ice. Myself and my fellow alumni involved in the South Florida Hockey Academy are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with the Panthers IceDen and work towards growing hockey in Florida."
SFHA offers three different full season teams for local, out-of-state and international student athletes: 2005 AAA, 2006 AAA and Midget/U16 AAA. In September 2018, the Academy will also add a U-18 AAA level program that is available for players born 2000 and 2001.
The Panthers IceDen, the official practice facility of the Florida Panthers, is a 125,000 square foot, state-of-the-art recreational skating and entertainment complex that houses three ice rinks and is the first designed multi-sheet facility in Florida. Panthers IceDen hockey programs include: Florida JR Panthers Travel Youth Hockey (U8-U18 AA), Vanguard Youth Hockey League (Ages 7-17) and Panthers Adult Hockey League.