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Devils run legitimizes Panthers

Jun 6, 2012, 9:53 PM EDT

Florida Panthers v New Jersey Devils - Game Four Getty Images

The New Jersey Devils aren’t looking particularly good right now, but making it to the Stanley Cup finals is an accomplishment in itself. It also reinforces the idea that Florida Panthers GM Dale Tallon has already assembled a team capable of competing with the big boys. After all, the Panthers took the Devils to overtime in Game 6 of the first round and double-overtime in Game 7.

Just one good bounce, and things could have turned out very differently for Florida.

“It just gives you some indication of what Dale has already accomplished in the plan up until now and what we should be able to achieve going forward,” Panthers General Partner Cliff Viner said after Florida signed Tallon to a multi-year extension.

After going more than a decade between playoff games, the Panthers are finally relevant again and the architect of that transformation isn’t planning on leaving any time soon.

“I want to be here forever,” Tallon said. “I’m still a young man. I’m fit. I’m willing and I’m able. I like it in Florida. I like Cliff Viner. I like working with him and I like working in this organization. We have a long way to go but I’m excited about our future. I couldn’t think of being in any other place. This is a thrill and I’m proud as hell to be a Florida Panther.”

He’s already preparing for the 2012-13 campaign with the goal of taking things a step further next season.

  1. mclovinhockey - Jun 6, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    Panthers wouldn’t have beaten Philly or NY… Fla and Philly are a lot a like… Both strong and have a ton of depth but fla lacks star power… Philly in round 2 did not show up, only reason they got dominated. The rangers were worn down bad from 2 7 game runs. Still fla would not have gotten pass those two teams even as weak as they played in round 2 and 3

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 7, 2012 at 1:10 AM

      Games are played on ice for a reason. Your probably one of the same clowns who said the Devils would sweep the Panthers.

    • imleftcoast - Jun 7, 2012 at 7:09 PM

      And the LA Kings legitimize the Vancouver Canucks season. The Canucks are no longer a President’s Cup winner who showed up unprepared and stunk at him. DeBeor shoud call Alain Vigneault who I guess no longer sucks donkey balls.

      Is Gary Bettman going to lock out the players until December in your alternative universe Ryan?

  2. mrpigs - Jun 7, 2012 at 9:25 AM

    Nothing will ever legitimize Florida hockey!!! Whomp whomp

    • sjshark714 - Jun 7, 2012 at 3:06 PM

      what about the 2004 stanley cup? or 1996 cup final? or 5 Rocket Richard trophies over last 12 years (most of any state in that time)? I would say its fully legitimized

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