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Florida Panthers using KG-Villanueva flap to support team’s fight against cancer

In July, the Florida Panthers created a “Seats Fit for a King” season ticket promotion in honor of LeBron James’ old and new jersey numbers with $23 lower bowl and $6 upper level (per game) tickets.

In September, they sold a $19.72 “Perfect Season, Perfect Price” season ticket (per game) in honor of the Miami Dolphins’ 1972 perfect season.

Now the team is using the flap between Detroit Pistons forward Charlie Villanueva and Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett to urge the two players to support the team’s goal of raising $100,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light The Night Walk in Broward County on Nov. 13.

With the team $10,000 from its goal, Panthers President Michael Yormark is making a plea to the two players to help.

For those who aren’t aware, after Tuesday night’s Celtics-Pistons game, Villenueva said Garnett referred to him as “a cancer patient” and he took to Twitter to complain about the accusation. Here’s what Villenueva wrote on this Twitter feed: "KG called me a cancer patient, I'm pissed because, u know how many people died from cancer, and he's tossing it like it's a joke.” He also wrote: "I wouldn't even trip about that, but a cancer patient, I know way 2 many people who passed away from it, and I have a special place 4 those."

Garnett released a statement denying he said “cancer patient” and instead said he told Villanueva, “You are cancerous to your team and our league.’ Garnett then said, “I would never be insensitive to the brave struggle that cancer patients endure. I have lost loved ones to this deadly disease and have a family member currently undergoing treatment. I would never say anything that distasteful. The game of life is far bigger than the game of basketball.”

Yormark, who is serving as chairman of the Broward Light The Night Walk taking place at Huizenga Plaza in Fort Lauderdale, will be promoting the walk at Friday’s Panthers game against the Carolina Hurricanes at BankAtlantic Center. Fans can also make donations here.

“One thing that even Kevin Garnett and Charlie Villanueva should agree on is that we all need to continue the fight against cancer and support the families and individuals affected by this horrible disease,” Yormark said in a statement. “In a way, the fight against cancer unites us all, and the outpouring of support our organization has received as we continue to march toward our goal is indicative of that.”

Categories: BankAtlantic Center (30), Florida Panthers (108), NHL (56), Promotions (120)

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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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