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The Panthers Cook Out, Dale Tallon Speaks Up ... One New Assistant Coach?

Tailgate GAINESVILLE -- I missed tonight's Panthers cookout at The Billboard, the one featuring GM Dale Tallon, coach Pete DeBoer and season tickets for $5.60 per game as part of a promotion with WQAM 560-AM coming back as the team's flagship station.

Barry Jackson was there, however, and he passed along some nuggets of information (no word on if he ate any chicken nuggets)...

First off, DeBoer said Mike Kitchen is looking elsewhere for employment but could return to the Florida staff next season -- adding that he hoped Kitch would return.

No other changes are coming, with Jim Hulton, Jamie Pringle (video) and Robb Tallas (goalies) all returning.

Second, Tallon said he expects to get a Blackhawks Stanley Cup ring, and yeah, that should happen. Tallon said he teared up when watching the Hawks win on Wednesday night and Jeremy Roenick knows that feeling.

Hey, you live and die with a franchise for that long and you are going to get emotional when they do something that huge. Tallon's name won't be on the Cup, but he deserves that ring.

If Chicago comes through, that is a class move. And I expect them to do so. Anyway....

Tallon said no player on the roster is untouchable and that he spoke with other GMs at the GM meeting and others have called to kick the tires. Show 'em the CarFax.

Tallon also said that the Panthers are going to play up-tempo and physical with the word "bruises" and "beaten" thrown around a lot. Well, we've heard that before. Lets see what happens.

Randy Sexton is also still with the franchise and is one of the candidates for the assistant GM gig. On a personal aside, here's hoping he gets it (if he indeed wants it). The guy is definitely capable and loyal. Again, we'll see.

Will have more from Barry and the cookout later I suppose. Figure I would pass on what he told me before I head out to dinner.

More when it becomes available.



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Why is it everyone but DeBoer doesn't think Kitch has done a good enough job to be retained???

DeBoer should stay, and maybe Tallas, but everyone else should be shown the door, IMO.

Now that The Cup has been awarded, Tallon and Co. have 2 weeks to show that they're starting off on the right foot with this fan base(as dwindling as it may be).

The "up-tempo, tough to play against, will beat you up and bruise you, know they came to play" cliches are nice article fodder, but they're been fed to Panther fans countless times.

Without the players, talk is cheap, we're watching.

I hope ownership allows Tallon to make big moves. I know Carolina and Tampa will have reduced payroll this year, which works better for us. We'll see what happens in 2 weeks! DO SOMETHING!

Apparently Carolina's payroll will be 44 million, just like the Panthers of old who ruined their prospects by using them as cheap starters. This is a good chance for us to do something quick to at least get a hold of our division.

It would be nice to see Tallon get a few of the wingers out of Chicago as part of a Hawks salary dump.

Looks like Chicago is ready to dump a lot of salary! I foresee a few players trading deep dish pizza and Polish sausage for Joe's Stone Crabs and Cafe Cubano!

Is there any interest in Laraque??

how about Horton our 1st, and 2 2nds for Boston's two first round picks?

I think that's a bit too much. I'm not a fan of Horton, but I'd rather use Horton to trade for someone else's current roster player... Not Ryder either, but maybe if you could get Patrice Bergeron or Blake Wheeler and also send Stillman to Boston...

Either way, I wouldn't sell the farm to move up for Hall or Seguin... Maybe if you were able to off-load Olesz's contract... Picking 3rd isn't such a bad thing... There's no guarantees with 18 year olds, even though Hall and Seguin will be gone... If they're not going to take Fowler, then they should consider trading down and make someone else pay to trade up and get him... Take advantage of your drafting position....

Good write-up today in another, a-hem, publication regarding Vokoun's future. From what it sounds like, T-Vo stays (at that salary, it is not a surprise) and has a good rapport with Tallon.

From what I read was that Tallon spoke with Vokoun and said he's(Vokoun) not going to be moved UNLESS he(Tallon) gets an offer he thinks is mutually benificial to both parties. Now, forgive me for being cynical, but what is "benificial to the team" is purely subjective to the individual making the statement, isn't it? Now, that being said, Tallon was about as honest with Vokoun as he possibly could be while still maintaining his professional integrity, IMO. Considering the UFA options(Nabokov, Turco, Mason, etc.) available, I wouldn't rule out a team stepping up and offering a package(picks, and/or players) for Vokoun, but after taking a glance at each conference, I just don't see a team in the top 8(of each conference) that necessarily needs a new goalie, and I can't imagine a team that didn't make the playoffs this past season that would actually take on Vokoun's 7 mil salary.

Halak traded to St. Louis for Eller & Schultz. Wow, for a goaltender that nearly took his team to the Cup finals, that's not a eye-opening return. Pretty good indicator that the goalie market is not that hot.

Who would you rather keep? Weiss or Horton? I say they both end up staying...just a hunch though.

Yeah Bob, it looks like teams are more willing to play it close to the vest until the first big "shot" is fired in UFA. I agree, considering what Halak did for them...and the few times I saw him play well for The Habs...they didn't really get a lot in return.

If you listen REALLY close, somewhere, you can actually HEAR Cary Price smiling, lol. I may be way off base, but...at least on the surface...that move looks pruely money-driven. Given Price's current salary, he wasn't as "movable" as Halak, and The Habs knew thay couldn't keep Halak and Price, but if what they got in return for Halak was the best deal out there to be had, then either things are a lot leaner than we thought budget-wise for a lot of NHL teams, which doesn't entirely make sense given that the salary cap is expected to go up by about 2 mil, or teams are getting ready to pounce on who they consider to be the best UFA goalies, and are taking the time to get all they're duck in a row, or just about everyone is happy with they're goalie situation and there is no real market for the pending UFA goalies.......Which, if it's the case, is gonna be a HUGE kink in the gut to the guys expecting to cash in. I still think Tampa is gonna wade into the UFA goalie pool(Nabokov, Turco, Mason) to try and find some stability for the next couple of years until they can develop another in they're system, but after them(and maybe The Sens), I just don't see another team that desperate for a "big name" in goal.

GR's been "sleeping" all this time so he can put together one heck of a draft preview next week, right GR? ;-)

It's killing me with all of the chatter of Horton going to Boston...if Horton stays, I know he'll underacheive yet again, yet I know if he flies from here, he is going to end up having a record season and finally 'blossom'.

It's not going to happen overnight. If the Panthers are smart they are listening to all offers and letting the teams interested outbid one another. This should be a very interesting week for the Cats, and a week that could re-shape this franchise for years to come.

Forget Horton going to Boston...what about his Playboy model wife (who is also related to Hall-of-Fame Goaltender Jacques Plante...).

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