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Another Name for The Billboard ... Ratings for Team USA-Canada Strong ... Panthers Back on Wednesday

Jayz2 The Panthers send me plenty of e-mails regarding numerous things going on at their arena in Sunrise, but sometimes, they must just take my name off the list.

Like on Friday. So sorry this 'news' is a little late.

Here's the press release from the team's website:

Sunrise Sports & Entertainment announced today that BankAtlantic renamed The BankAtlantic Center to The Jay-Z Center for 24 hours in support of the national kickoff of Jay-Z’s BP3 Tour on Saturday Feb. 20th.

The concert marks the opening of the famed artist’s 23-stop spring tour, which also includes concerts in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. 

“BankAtlantic wanted to extend Jay-Z a warm Florida welcome from Florida’s Bank by offering to rename the BankAtlantic Center for one night only. BankAtlantic Center is proud to be the home of Jay-Z’s national tour launch and is looking forward to a spectacular performance that will set the bar for the tour.” said SSE President & COO, Michael Yormark. “His incredible performance in front of a sold-out crowd further represents the BankAtlantic Center’s ability to thrill South Florida entertainment fans with a diverse array of concerts and events.”

By all accounts it was a good show by Jay-Z -- and a great get for the Jay-Z Billboard Center.

Here is a link to Adrian Ruhi's review of the show, the set list and photos from the show.

Word is, the Panthers went all out to get this show over their rivals from Miami at AmericanAirlines Arena. I would not be surprised if this was thrown into the contract as a perk to help seal the deal.

Wonder what they are doing for this weekend's Jimmy Buffet show?

Maybe they could name the place after Buffet's beer -- Land Shark Arena? Land Shark Center? Land Shark Stadium?

Nah, no one would ever go for that one.

-- Since construction began in 1996, the Sawgrass arena has been called, at one time or another:

Broward County Civic Arena; National Car Rental Center; Office Depot Center; BankAtlantic Center; Jay-Z Center.

Some names, of course, lasted longer than others.

-- The ratings for Sunday night's Team USA-Canada game were huge both in the States (despite being sent all the way over to MSNBC) and in Canada.

According to The Toronto Star, the "game became the most-watched sports broadcast in Canadian history, with an average of 10.6 million people sharing in the national angst."

Here in the States, the game was watched by more than 7 million people -- a little more than the Stanley Cup Finals averaged each night last season.

Panthers Tomas Vokoun and Dennis Seidenberg each have at least one more game in Vancouver. Vokoun backstops the Czechs tomorrow against Latvia and Seidenberg's German team's play comes to an end as they face Roberto Luongo and Canada.

-- The Panthers Olympic break is about over.

The team (minus Vokoun and Seidenberg and I'm sure one or two others) will be back at Incredible Ice in Coral Springs on Wednesday at 2 p.m. That practice, as well as the other ones leading up to the March 2 return in Atlanta, are also open. After Wednesday, the team is scheduled to go at 10 a.m.

Come see your favorite current Panthers while you can. They all might not be around all that long.

The roster freeze ends March 1.