x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Shake up has awoken NHL Panthers' from slumber party

Stumbling out of the gate, the Florida Panthers' general manager knew he had to make some moves to wake up the team. Swapped out to Vancouver were David Booth and Steve Reinprecht for Mikael Samuelsson and Marco Sturm. Just like that, Florida responded with a win.

Sometimes, you just have to get their attention.

The Florida Panthers were off to a sluggish start - including two successive shutout losses - when their general manager decided he needed to send a message.

Frustrated by the team's lacklustre showing, Dean Tallon shipped out two key players and a future draft pick, brought in two new players - and then got immediate results on the ice.

Just minutes after David Booth, the left wing, and Steve Reinprecht, the centre, were sent to the Vancouver Canucks for the forwards Mikael Samuelsson and Marco Sturm, the Panthers went out and beat the New York Islanders 4-2 on Saturday night.

Tallon said he made the trade, in part, to tell his team that they needed to play better. Shape up, or you may be shipped out.

"A lot of things come into play," he said. "We're in the performance business and I was not happy with our team's performance, especially the last two games.

"I wasn't going to sit still and let this fester, and I want to send a message and I want to make changes and I want to get better."

Message received.

It is too soon to say whether the Panthers have started to turn things around, but for now, at least, it looks as though Tallon made the right move with the changes.

"They played a heck of a lot harder than they have the last two games," Kevin Dineen, the Panthers coach, said of his team.