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Panthers and Florida Everblades to become affiliates

Tampa Bay Lightning v Florida Panthers - Game One
SUNRISE, FL – MAY 17: Red towels with the Florida Panthers logo were placed on the seats prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game One of the Second Round of the 2022 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the FLA Live Arena on May 17, 2022 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

The Florida Panthers have announced an agreement with the Florida Everblades of the ECHL to become their new minor league affiliate replacing the Greenville Swamp Rabbits.

“We are pleased to announce a new affiliation with the Florida Everblades,” said Brett Peterson, Assistant General Manager of the Florida Panthers. “We want to thank the Swamp Rabbits for two great seasons and look forward to beginning a new partnership just down the road in Estero, Fla. We look forward to the development of our young players in Florida and many opportunities together with this new pipeline plan.”

Founded in 1998, the Everblades call Hertz Arena in Estero home and have been to the playoffs all but one season and have twice won the Kelly Cup as ECHL Champions, including winning the title last season.

“We are thrilled to have the Florida Panthers as our new NHL affiliate,” said Craig Brush, General Manager of the Florida Everblades. “Florida’s General Manager Bill Zito and Assistant General Manager Brett Peterson have done an outstanding job and we are looking forward to becoming an integral part of the development of players for the Panthers and Charlotte Checkers.”