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Florida Panthers “Came To Play”; host first 2010 Cats Cookout

The Florida Panthers have unveiled their marketing slogan for the 2010-11 season. Be ready to be underwhelmed:

“We Came To Play”


“We Came To Play.”

As opposed to what?

Developed by Hi-Voltage Advertising of Boca Raton, the campaign is meant to invoke the “passionate and emotional experience and party atmosphere of Panthers home games at the BankAtlantic Center,” according to a team release. Radio ads called “Playground” were to begin airing yesterday.

Here the Panthers and Hi-Voltage weigh in:

“Florida Panthers hockey at the BankAtlantic Center is unique in that it captivates fans through both the action on the ice and the excitement of the in-arena experience,” Panthers President Michael Yormark said in a statement. “There is no doubt that Cats hockey provides the best entertainment value and most fun sports atmosphere in South Florida. During the 2010-11 season, the real party is at the BankAtlantic Center.”

Hi-Voltage President Pete Gary adds: "Our goal at Hi-Voltage was to create a commercial featuring the entertainment experience for the first-timer to the diehard hockey fan. We wanted to showcase the fun, excitement and party atmosphere of being at the BankAtlantic Center for a Panthers game, whether it was with your family or with your friends for a night out.”

As you might imagine, the slogan has already generated jokes and detractors. It’s like it’s ripe for an insert joke here: “We Came To Play.” Uh, isn’t that what you’re supposed to do?

Some comments about the campaign on The Litter Box Panthers fan discussion blog include: “I don’t want to root for a team that just comes to play. I want a team that wins!” And “I appreciate the effort, but it leaves room for comments to follow it. We came to play, but we weren’t ready.We came to play, but we didn’t feel like it.”

As luck would have it, the campaign includes a ticket deal: “The Panthers are encouraging fans to bring their friends to party” with a “Buy One, Get One Half Off” offer on full season ticket plans through the NHL Draft on June 25. See ad for the ticket offer with new slogan below.

Meanwhile, new GM Dale Tallon – the news of his arrival has caused some fans to party – and Coach Peter DeBoer are scheduled to attend the first Cats Cookout of 2010 next Thursday, June 10. The free barbecue that includes live music and a chance to meet Tallon, DeBoer, Panthers broadcasters and alumni. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. at BankAtlantic Center. RSVP at 954-835-PUCK.

Categories: Advertising (79), BankAtlantic Center (30), Florida Panthers (108), NHL (56), Tickets (126)

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About the author
CRAIG DAVIS In more than 33 years at the Sun Sentinel, Craig Davis has written about a wide variety of sports topics from baseball to yachting, fishing to triathlons, and also worked as a copy editor and page designer. Recently he reported on local sports, including running, swimming, cycling, equestrian and beach volleyball. He enjoys sports as a participant as well as a spectator, is active in the South Florida running scene plays in the curling club at Saveology Iceplex. This blog offers a glimpse at the business side of sports in the interest of enhancing enjoyment of the games and sporting options as a spectator as well as a participant.
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