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PANTHERS TRIM STAFF: Mass Layoffs in Sunrise on Monday

TWITTER: @GeorgeRichards

The Panthers laid off approximately 30 employees today with most of the damage coming within the team's sales department.

I was told at least one Vice President was fired as well as a long-time employee within the team's public relations staff. Other positions from throughout the organization were closed. I've been told many won't be replaced, at least not anytime soon.

According to someone who spoke with me this afternoon, the team called a meeting in a conference room at the arena and told those employees there they were being let go.

The message: The team is losing money and needs to save some.

"After a careful review of our business, earlier today we undertook a reorganization that resulted in certain positions being eliminated,'' CEO Rory Babich wrote in a statement.

"As we continue to develop a long-term, sustainable business model, these changes will enable us to operate efficiently and effectively while continuing to focus on bringing the best in sports and entertainment to BB&T Center and providing best in class service for our sports and entertainment fans."



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What a shame.... some very good, hard working people were let go.

You can blame "Club Red" and you can blame those responsible for the poor team performance, but it is unfortunate that the staff that had to sell a product that was not worth paying for had to pay the ultimate price.

So basically, we haven't received our money from the county, why try and sell tickets, and same story, different owners. And by the way, the state didn't vote for the casino I wanted, that's why I bought the team in the first place.

this owner sucks balls

It seems you can change the nameplates on the door, but, you can't the philosophy of this organization all the way back to Huzienga....Promises to spend money and the next thing you see is layoffs and trying to save a little here and a little there. I guess the old theory of " You have to spend money to make money" doesn't work when it comes to the Panthers. I keep seeing this picture of the script of the movie Major League

SenecaOne is no hiring great sales people! If you were laid off and looking for a great oppotunity downtown Delray email careers@senecaone.com

They also interviewing assistant coaches with positive loss/wins 1 nhl year or less record ...

The Arena does well with many events but not all.
I am a Season Ticket holder going back to 1998.
The prices then were much higher then and we had a better product on the ice.
Potential, Potential, Potential ? NOW !

We don't need changes in the Sales Side but the Hockey Side.

Its obvious that the new owner wants his boys to oversee the sales department and is short sided by taking experienced people with strong relationships and throwing out the door.
Bad Decision that will come back to bite Ownership in the BUTT.

P.S. The Food in the Clubs, I am told has gone downhill in Quality as they cut costs !
NO, NO, NO NO, NO ......................

This isn't Wall Street.

I agree with the last comment.

The Product and Food is nothing Special.

New Ownership is needed immediately.

Well Mr. Viola,

I don't know much about the sales people you're letting go, but I will tell you this. You fired Horacek and promised that you would bring in an experienced coach who has been to the playoffs. What happened to that garbage? So far, the only thing I'm hearing about are assistant coaches on other teams. You might as well have kept Horacek. What happened to Trotz? He trotted right on over to another team. Here we go again with the same BS! He buys the team and then realizes the team is losing money. No S*&t, dummy! Thats why they sold the team to you and your sons.

I would have thought that with all the money they're going to spend to create a playoff-bound team they would need to add sales reps to handle the huge increase in ticket sales. They might as well bring back Keenan to hammer the final nail in this rotting coffin.

The team is going to lose 10x more money with this horrible move - no $$ amount can be put on trust and loyalty that the fans, partners, and sponsors HAD with this organization. What a way to start out a new ownership in an already struggling organization. Brave new employees there - I wouldn't work for them after a move like that. I just hope they can recover from this enough to save face. All the work that the Yormark dynasty built comes crashing down in just weeks.

Hey ARealist, no experienced coach like that wants to come here.

I want to wish Brett Weisbrot the best!!!!!, he was always a professional even though he was selling a bad product! and whenever we needed something he was always there to help including non hockey events.

Mr. Viola said he would run this as a family business and he has kept his word, we should not be surprised by this move

I think this was done to cut cost and to help pay for Viola's legal bills. His company Virtu Financial is being sued by the state of providence. They apparently are under investigation too.

Cut cost? Fire Tallon and bring back Horachek and Santos

The State of Providence? Must be the new 51st state. I miss the news one day and we need to add a star to the flag.

Viola, Cifu, and Babich are the new official 3 stooges. Cifu is Curly, obviously bc he is a fat dummy.

Well, some good people are being let go - but cmon, I had Club Red seats this past year... you had A LOT of people in suits with red pins just standing around at every game. Probably 1 CR rep for every 5 fans - the client load made no sense.

Even if they add some talent this offseason, they're a long way from justifying having all those salespeople. My sales rep Anthony J. wisely got out (and joined the Orange Bowl) last March -- he saw this coming. Others should have too.

I wish them the best -- the good news is you can take a sales background to a lot of different industries.

That had to be the hardest job in the world, selling that team to the public

Brian - it's not what they do DURING the games, it's what they do for the 12-15 hours every do leading up to the game. You really need to understand the business on the backend before you can make an uneducated comment like that.
Check out the blog we just found:


Mario and Roland were there for a long time and for good reason. They are two consummate professionals who will be sorely missed.

I wish them both well.

The Panthers can GO TO HELL.

All these unhappy sales smocks were the ones pushing the Yormack crap . 10 years no playoffs "product". Same crap now BTW..

WHEN 2 COACHES ONE AFTER THE OTHER CAN"T SAVE THE SINKING BOAT-WHAT REASONS ARE THERE TO KEEP THE GM? (while serious contenders fire the GM for not getting into the semifinals…what a joke!!!

Blueprint TM, Club Red TM, Playoff Guarantee TM, Lamb-basted TM

Unless they produce a better on-ice product, then moving is inevitable. While I know hockey fans are very loyal, has the SFla demographics changed too much to support hockey long term? Winning brings fans, but I'm suspicious about the prospect of the NHL being in Broward County for very long.

The stench continues to waft unabated like a dirty diaper from this sad sack franchise.

Is there a more pathetic franchise (management, coaching, players, performance track record) among the four major league sports?

Selling tickets to Florida Panthers games sounds utterly unbearable and a terribly difficult task, given the last two decades of utter nonsense and total and comprehensive failure.

cheese cheese

-Used to be a great place

What ARE the demographics of Los Angeles? Phoenix? The Maryland, DC area?

Don't get so easily sucked in. You WIN, YOU DRAW. This IS a proven market, To get the amount of fans attending, whether tickets were free, discounted, found in elevators, mean NOTHING! With this circus of losing and it's ring leaders of D-Bags, I salute EACH Panther follower. There's PLENTY of them, they're just continuing the act of "waiting".

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