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Who will be Florida's next GM? Now with On Frozen Poll

Gm Bill Torrey is in charge of the Florida general manager search, one that will probably last well past the upcoming draft in Toronto.

Who would you like to see running things from atop One Panther Parkway with that somewhat boring view of the Everglades? And does Jacques leave the cool golf bag that sits in his office to his replacement?

Good thing JM never got around to hanging up all his pictures. I always knew he wasn't in this job for the long haul, mostly because of that. Would have taken an hour. Yet they all sat stacked up on the floor or on filing cabinets, waiting to be packed up to his next coaching address.

And when I said this morning that I didn't believe the Montreal story, I just didn't believe that the Canadiens had offered him the job. If they had, we would have heard about this nonstop from the Montreal media. I never had any doubt that if JM was offered a coaching job -- anywhere, much less storied Montreal -- that he would jump at it. The guy's a coach. Plain and simple.

I know a lot of people are celebrating the fact that JM is leaving, but I'm not so sure that's wise. JM was a pretty good GM, and helped get the Panthers organization back on somewhat solid footing. JM took a gamble by not trading Jay at the deadline, a gamble he won. By leaving, he doesn't have to worry about the consequences of not getting anything for the team's top asset! That's pretty slick.

Anyway, back to the task at hand.

Who do you like for the new Florida GM? Leave comments below. Here are some names I'm throwing out there -- and remember, this is complete speculation on my part.


-- Jay Feaster: Former GM of Lightning, helped build 2004 Cup champ

-- Rick Dudley: Former Florida GM now assistant in Chicago

-- Les Jackson: Former Dallas GM, reassigned officially on Monday

-- Doug MacLean: Former Florida coach, former president of Blue Jackets

-- Pierre McGuire: Television analyst was a finalist for Minnesota job

-- Scott Mellanby: Former Florida captain, now scout in Vancouver

-- Dave Nonis: Former Vancouver GM (remember Luongo trade?) now in Toronto

-- Randy Sexton: Current assistant GM in Florida; GM of Senators in early years

-- Neil Smith: GM of 1994 Cup champion Rangers; was briefly GM of Islanders

And just for fun:

-- Denis Potvin: Disposed TV analyst who kind of knows Bill Torrey

-- Mike Keenan: He's been there, he's done that

Of course, I only have 10 spots, so since Keenan's been here a few times I'll leave him off the poll. He gets the benefit of the doubt since he probably still has a set of keys to the place.

Go ahead and vote as much as you want. If you don't like any of these choices, leave yours below.


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if Cohen picks Dudley again then we are really in trouble. His drafts were horrible, (Horton instead of Staal is the biggest mistake of many).

Hopefully Cohen learned when he brought back Keenan not to make the same mistake twice.

With Torrey in charge you need to look at his connections. I would like to see Yzerman because he brings credibility and he has learned from the best on how to build an organization for the long term, with your list I picked Nonis.

I love Doug but I don't think he would be a good GM, he really didn't build the Blue Jackets very well.

Mellanby I like as well, but the organization has never really welcomed him back so I don't see that happening.

McGuire would be wrong his claim to fame is being a mouth on tv.

Feaster inherited a team on the verge of going to the cup and then saw them sink to the bottom.

Neil Smith has one claim to fame but has Keenan in his background and there must be some reason why he still does not have a job.

Les Jackson is a scout and did not do well in Dallas

Randy Sexton is only in the NHL because of JM the GM and we can only hope he doesn't blow this draft.

Denis is great but he won't be back here after what Yomark did to him unless Yomark is gone when the sale is completed

I will prey, and keep praying for Mcguire the Monster to lead this team...the sky's the limit for this man whom I confidently call the best analyst of all time. The man knows what hes doing

Yeah Yzerman is wishful thinking i think we would all faint if he came here. But what about the assistant gm for the red wings i heard that name go around as well.

Here are some other names, GR:

Steve Yzerman
Dave Taylor
Craig Patrick
Doug Risenbrough

I agree with steph... Mcguire has always praised the pathers organisation and would be a great dynamic fit for this franchise him or Yzerman I get excited again

TSN just reported that Alan COhen is trying to sell his piece of the cats..... COuld we have gotten rid of Martin Jokinen and Cohen....in the same decade.... 1 more too go boys YORMARK and will have a decent franchise.... oh yeah and that horrible reporter for the sunsentinel... skolnick or something. GR any report on that group called the medallion group offering to buy alan cohen's share?

Jim Nill Assistant General manager of the Detroit Red Wings.


Potvin! It won't happen, but that would be great!

The Panthers are at a crossroads and need an experienced GM to guide them down the right path. Yzerman, Sexton, Mellanby, no experience. McGuire, please get serious, same for Potvin. There is no way either one wants to devote the time necessary to the job.
My choice would either be Nonis, Nill or Smith. Be assured whoever is chosen, will be the wrong choice. Cohen and Yormark will go on the cheap with this as they do everything.

McGuire is Barry Melrose, minus the (very) brief coaching success. No significant upper-management experience to speak of.

Bring on Feaster.

Dave Andrews, current President of the AHL. This guy is awesome and he is destined to either be an NHL GM or perhaps even get Bettman's job one day. He's smart, knows hockey, has coaching and management experience and he's highly respected. He's the best candidate and hardly anyone knows who he is - outside of the world of hockey, that is.

pat burns! give it to pat burns!

I like the idea of Dudley, Feaster or Nill. All bring tremendous experience and all are upgrades on JM the (former) GM.

That or give me a shot at the role... LOL

Forgot, also Steve Yzerman would be a great choice as well. I think everything he has picked up in Detroit plus just him being a fresh face with new ideas would be very beneficial to the team.

Denis Potvin - We wouldn't have to worry about having a soft team anymore.

Me. I have forseen so much that has happened to this team in the past eight years, I have been banned repeatedly from message boards cause people hate when someone is right.

Bring Dudley back. As much as people criticize him, most of his tenure can be excused by the influence of Keenan (insisted to Cohen on drafting Horton and Stewart) or Cohen putting his nose where it didn't belong (2003 drafting of Ovechkin). At least under Dudley, this franchise improved in the standings each and every year without having to play with the numbers (having a winning season if you discount overtime losses) or benefit from the NHL changing the points format. And if the team didn't allow Keenan to dump the prospects or kill the minor league system, who knows truly how Dudley's prospects would have turned out with a little true development, as they made the AHL playoffs both years before Keenan became GM.

mcguire because all the other candidates suck balls,,,definitely dont want Feaster, Maclean, dudley or jackson...Nill is a solid choice

My vote is Jim Nill from Detroit. This guy is the current Assistant GM with Detroit and is supposedly a key to the driving force in their success (as good a GM as Holland is).

Whoever wrote this article is an incompetent. Nonis -- and his boss Brian Burke -- have repeatedly said that as per the terms of his employment in Toronto, Nonis agreed that he would go nowhere else for at least a year.

This franchise is taken seriously by no one, especially by the NHL. The new guys have no room to pick a no-name GM, or a a second-stringer from a good team. That means Stanley Cup-winning Neil Smith needs to get this job.

He did it in NY breaking an endless streak of Rangers failure, and doesn't that sound familiar here. He was already turning that Islanders boat around in his first month, when the crazy owner forced him out for the backup goalie, and they sank to the bottom of the Atlantic like a rock.

That's what the Panthers are in danger of doing if they don't get a proven Cup winner, bold trader and strong personality in that GM spot, especially with the kinds of hands-on guys this new ownership seems to have that could muddle things up.

No amateurs please! I vote for Neil Smith.

Nil and Andrews are two of the best candidates out there but I highly doubt that either would take this job if offered let alone interview for it. And I doubt that Torrey even has the foresight to think a bit outside of the box and even think about Andrews. Besides that, I think there is too much at play here for a serious candidate search to really take place before new ownership had taken over. And that assumes that Torrey is still truly capable of conducting such a search.

I think its going to be Sexton until atleast next offseason. And Sexton for one season would be better in the long term than retreading Keenan, Dudley or Mclean or making some other poor choice that the club is stuck with. Patience here. Find a good GM that is also willing to take the job not the best of a bad bunch just because he is willing to take the job. Even if it takes a season to do it.

Craig Patrick is the most qualified candidate out there and its not even close. He won two Stanley Cups with the Penguins and had them in the playoffs for over a decade while on a shoestring budget. When management slashed his payroll to the point where the team was not very competitive he parlayed that into Marc-Andre Fleury and Evgeni Malkin. Patrick is responsible for most of the current Penguins' roster and he would bring instant credibility to this organization.

We want to win for once and Neil Smith always wins!!!!.....He worked for Torrey in the Islander Dynasty days....he made the sad sack Rangers win a Cup when nobody thought it was possible....when I lived in Michigan I watched him help build the Detroit Red Wings and win 2 cups in the AHL as GM of Adirondack.....Didn't you read SI?...He drafted Lidstrom, Fedorov, Sillinger, Drake, Boughner and Konstantinov all in the 89 draft!!!!...Smith drafted Kovalev 13th overall and Doug Weight in the 2nd round!...signed Gretzky and traded for Messier...and drafted for Detroit and signed for Rangers Adam Graves...what more could you want? Wake up!!! I'm sick of driving to Sawgrass and watching dysfunctional teams under Martin, Keenan, Murray, and Cohen.....Get Neil Smith

If you want to win, Smith is the man imo. Matt hit it right on the head above.

Jim Nill - Detroit Red Wings
Kevin Cheveldayoff - Chicago Wolves
Mark/Dale Hunter - London Knights

A couple of possible assistant GMs that I think would be nice options:

Washington Caps Asst GM Brian MacLellan
Boston Bruins Asst GM Jim Benning

Both come from a scouting background and have the experience.

A guy I just thought of the other day as a wildcard. Jody Gage, the former GM of the Rochester Amerks. He's got intimate knowledge of the players in our system, knows the organization already, is a loyal guy, has the GM experience (unlike McGuire), knows the system we've got in place and would probably work pretty well with PDB.

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