The Florida Panthers have announced the hiring of former Chicago Blackhawks general manager Dale Tallon. Tallon replaces Randy Sexton.
Tallon had been with the Blackhawks organization for 33 years, as a player and a broadcaster before he was an executive. He was promoted to the post of GM in the Windy City in 2005 and was instrumental in getting the franchise to the level they find themselves at today. Tallon was behind the drafting and signing of Jonathon Toews and Patrick Kane, for instance.
Even so, last year the Blackhawks reassigned Tallon to the post of senior adviser.
The signing by the Panthers puts the team in a unique position to, in theory, experience similar rebirth. It’s no secret that Florida is heading in a younger direction, so Tallon could be the key man for the job in building the team up virtually from scratch.
“It is with great pleasure and excitement that I join the Florida Panthers,” Tallon said in a statement Monday. “I look forward to getting to work and will immediately evaluate our club’s framework, as we diligently prepare for the upcoming draft and free agency signing period.”
Tallon was be officially unveiled as the club’s new GM at a press conference on Tuesday morning.
The Panthers have their work cut out for them and will probably always struggle to reach the heights they found themselves in the 1996 playoffs. Since reaching that level and since falling to the Colorado Avalanche in the Stanley Cup Finals that year, the Panthers have been little more than a mediocre franchise in a struggling market.
Despite reaching the playoffs a few times and boasting Pavel Bure as one of their stars, the Panthers have never really been able to pull off much success for very long. If the Tallon formula works well in Florida, fans could be seeing a new team take shape over the next few seasons. If it doesn’t, Tallon will once again find himself on the move. It really is that simple.
Posted by Jordan Richardson.