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The well-tanned gentleman on your right is Ryan Powers, an account executive in the new business development department for the Florida Panthers.

Among his duties are convincing local businesses to spend money to see crappy hockey, soothing fans as their general manager bungles his way to potentially selecting John Tavares next summer and, evidently, player evaluation with a touch of character assassination.

The Miami Herald reports today that Powers sent an e-mail to some Panthers season-ticket holders defending the team's recent trade of captain Olli Jokinen to the Phoenix Coyotes, which was met with widespread ridicule and criticism. But as they say in Arena Football, the best defense is a good offense. So the ticket account executive decided to pimp his bosses' trade by completely trashing Jokinen's talent, leadership and professionalism.

No wonder Jay Bouwmeester wants to get the hell out of Florida.

From the Herald, here's Ryan the intern's manifesto:

In the first paragraph of Powers' e-mail, Powers discussed what he believed defensemen Nick Boynton and Keith Ballard would bring to the Panthers. The second paragraph took several runs at Jokinen (the paragraph is presented verbatim):

"Olli is a great player, but he has shown no leadership or improvement, and he never came through for us when we needed him the most. As a stat, Jokinen scored 5 goals in the last 24 games, this is not acceptable for a Captain of an NHL organization. He played with little heart or passion and never had the determination to reach the playoffs. This move was done for one reason only, to make the postseason and return the passion and energy into this arena."

Ouch. "As a stat, Jokinen scored 5 goals in the last 24 games, this is not acceptable for a Captain of an NHL organization." Sounds like someone really screwed Ryan's fantasy hockey team in the playoffs, eh?

The Herald reports that Florida Panthers chief executive officer Michael Yormark was not exactly pleased that Powers had given himself a promotion to director of hockey operations: "This is not the kind of communication we condone and is unacceptable. We've addressed the issue with the individual. Not only with the individual, but with the entire staff. I can assure you this is not the kind of communication you will see in the future."

Addressed? Yup. Disciplined? The story didn't say, but let's be honest here: There really shouldn't be any hell for Powers to catch. He slammed a player that's no longer with the team and wasn't exactly going to have his jersey retired in Florida anyway. Plus, GM Jacques Martin pretty much made the same claim about Jokinen's lack of heroism at the draft, saying that Phoenix's "leadership is already established, so for him it's a good opportunity."

Most of all, it's an unofficial tradition to piss all over a former star's legacy once they leave Florida. Witness the roast Panthers players gave Pavel Bure upon his departure, in which Bill Lindsay did everything but call him a lazy rich turd.

Can you imagine the hell Jay Bouwmeester would catch if the restricted free agent forced a trade out of Florida?

Newsday's Steve Zipay reports that "a person close to" Bouwmeester told the paper the defenseman wants out. Of course, Zipay's subsequent endorsement of the New York Rangers as a destination makes you wonder if he's just trying to keep up with Larry Brooks's gossip output. The Fourth Period, however, believes the Rangers, Ottawa Senators, Edmonton Oilers and New Jersey Devils would have interest. (That last one is quite interesting, as Lou Lamoriello's been looking for a foundational blue-liner since Niedermayer left. And no, Johnny Oduya doesn't count.)

So the team's best offensive player was just shipped off for two defensemen, and the team's best defensive player may want out. Let's go Panthers, indeed.

At this rate, Pete DeBoer will be available for a job he really wants by Year Two.

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