Obviously the big news yesterday was the announcement of the sale and intent to relocate the Atlanta Thrashers. But that's not all that went down yesterday. Here's a quick run-through.
Panthers Bringing Back the Red
According to Miami Herald beat writer George Richards, the Florida Panthers are revisiting the past with new red sweaters starting in the 2011-12 season.
I highly recommend reading his latest On Frozen Pond blog post. But if you can't be bothered, here's some of what he wrote on the subject.
The Panthers are shifting their marketing focus this summer to coincide with their return to their orginal look.
A restyled red jersey will become Florida's primary jersey this season — the first time the red will be the team's primary home jersey since the early 2000s when it was relegated to alternate thirds and then dropped during the Reebok restyle in 2007. I was told Alan Cohen hated the red look, and for parts of his ownership, the team only wore that color on weekends.
I have seen mockups with the new circle logo — which debuted on the Tampa Bay JetBlue thirds — on them although I have been told it will be the leaping cat on the front. Sans stick.
No word on whether the JetBlues will return as the alternate for a third season. Florida may keep the home blue jerseys it has worn since the 2007-08 season as the alternate. When I find out about the thirds, will let you know.
He says the secondary logo — sun with crossed hockey stick and palm tree — will remain on the new sweater, which will be unveiled at the 2011 NHL Entry Draft on June 24. The new draftees will be the first to sport the new design.
So look for lots more red from the Panthers this summer. Personally, I think this is great. Always like the Panthers better in red than navy.
Moves Around the Minors
The rest of this post can be done with bullet points and, since I'm up against the clock, that's a good thing.
- The Telegram in St. John's is reporting that a deal has been reached to relocate the AHL's now homeless Manitoba Moose to Newfoundland for the start of the 2011-12 season. With the acquisition of the Thrashers, True North was obviously eager to unload the minor league franchise that filled Winnipeg's NHL gap for the last 15 years. No word yet on what the team's new name will be. full story
- The ECHL's newest expansion team, the Chicago Express is set to begin play in the 2011-12 season. So yesterday, they unveiled the jerseys they'll wear. Unsurprisingly, they're based on the Blackhawks' uniform design in the Express' blue and silver color scheme. They grey third jersey steps outside the box a little bit, but overall an unimpressive set. full story
- In other ECHL news, the league approved the membership of the Colorado Eagles, formerly of the Central Hockey League. With the folding of the Victoria Salmon Kings and the addition of the Express and Eagles, the ECHL will begin play with 20 teams this fall. full story
- Joining Victoria and Atlanta in losing hockey teams this summer is Lewiston, Maine. The QMJHL's Lewiston MAINEiacs have folded and the league announced that in 2012, it will expand to Sherbrooke, Quebec — which is actually where the MAINEiacs relocated from in 2003. Ouch. full story
That's all I have for now. Be sure to follow @icethetics on Twitter or keep an eye on the feed in the sidebar for the latest updates. I intend to have more updates on these stories throughout the summer or, at the very least, full coverage in the 2011 Icethetics Season Preview in September.