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A letter from Jacques Martin


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Just got this in my e-mail.......................


Dear John,





I hope you are having a wonderful summer. We are now less than 45 days from the start of training camp, and thanks to last week?s final player signings, our team is set for the 2006-07 NHL season.




As I mentioned in my ?State of the Team? address, our main goals for this offseason were to keep our core nucleus intact, and supplement them with a scoring winger and two top-four defensemen.




Thanks to the resigning of players such as defensemen Jay Bouwmeester, Mike Van Ryn and Branislav Mezei and forwards Nathan Horton and Stephen Weiss, our nucleus is as strong as ever. Add in All-Star sniper Todd Bertuzzi, tough blueliners Ruslan Salei and Bryan Allen and talented goaltender Alex Auld, as well as Hall of Famer Ed Belfour, and this is undoubtedly one of the strongest Panthers teams in history.




In fact, now that we?ve resigned all of our players, the only commitment we are waiting for is yours. I am personally asking you to support our hockey club and come along for a memorable season. Based on last year?s accomplishments, you have many reasons to believe that great things lie ahead for your Panthers.




1) A 15-7-3 mark after the Olympic break and a 28-16-7 record in the final 51 contests


2) The second best home win total in franchise history with 25


3) A 6-2 record versus Tampa Bay


4) March was the best month in franchise history with a 10-4-1 record


5) Franchise record seven game winning streak in March


6) Five players represented their countries at the 2006 Winter Olympics


7) Averaged over 16,000 fans per game at the BankAtlantic Center


8) The Hockey News rated our offseason as one of the best in the league




For 2006-07 our team is focused on a single goal: this franchise?s first playoff appearance in five seasons. Having spoken with our Captain Olli Jokinen, and many of our other veterans such as Joe Nieuwendyk and Gary Roberts, I am confident we will accomplish that goal.




To thank you for deciding to re-commit to our organization, I will be personally hosting a special event later this summer, which you and your family will be invited to. Details will be forthcoming in the second week in August. I look forward to seeing you at the BankAtlantic Center on Opening Night in October.











Jacques Martin


Head Coach


Florida Panthers

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if they can keep


Jay Bouwmeester, Mike Van Ryn and Branislav Mezei and forwards Nathan Horton and Stephen Weiss


for 10 years plus the depth of our minors right now, that will be scary. I was told we have a good minor leagues, but really I still am learning of hockey stuff :)

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