Official FLorida Everblades Website: http://www.floridaeverblades.com/
The team was founded by current owner Craig Brush in 1998. Prior to the building of the Germain Arena, the arena sat on an empty cow pasture on what is now Everblades Parkway near Interstate 75 in Estero. Brush was said to be reading a free copy of a National Geographic magazine that featured articles on the Florida Everglades, when he envisioned the idea to bring a minor-league hockey team to Southwest Florida. The team's name derives from the former Kentucky Thoroughblades AHL franchise.
The Everblades' logo features a gator-head design fused in the form of an ice skate. The logo was designed by a Vancouver graphic design company affiliated with Carolina Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos, who came up with the idea of choosing the Everblades colors as blue and green, in tribute to the Hartford Whalers team that Karmanos moved to Raleigh, North Carolina. The Everblades' inaugural home opener featured a pre-game ceremony in which a large alligator was brought onto the ice to pay tribute to the team's name and logo, as well as Florida's vast population of reptile species.
Awards and Trophies Edit
E.A. Gingher Memorial Trophy Edit
The Everblades have won the E.A. Gingher Memorial Trophy in both 2004 and 2005. In 2004, the trophy was given to the champion of the Eastern Conference and to the American Conference champion in 2005. In both years, the Everblades lost to the winners of the Bruce Taylor Trophy. In 2004 the loss was to the Idaho Steelheads of the Western Conference and to the Trenton Titans of the National Conference in 2005.
Brabham Cup Edit
In the 1999–2000 season, the Everblades won the Brabham Cup. This trophy is given to the team that has the best position in the standings for the entire league. The Everblades took the trophy with 108 points (53-15-2), but fell in the first round to the Augusta Lynx. In the ECHL in 2000, there was no overtime period, with play going directly to a shootout. Therefore all losses in a shootout are designated as ties.
Historic Games in Everblades History Edit
2005 Playoff BrawlEdit
One famous event that stands out among Blades' fans was during the 2005 ECHL playoffs.
With the Everblades hosting the Greenville Grrrowl on April 22, 2005 for the first game of the American Conference Semifinals, the Everblades and Grrrowl would engage in a third-period line brawl that would see both teams combine for 197 minutes in penalties.
The brawl stemmed from previous incidents throughout the game. Prior to the brawl, then-Everblades forward Greg Hornby checked Greenville's Vladimir Gusev hard into the boards behind the net. Gusev would leave the game injured, and as a result, the pace of the game as well as checking, would pick up.
With the Blades up 4-1 with about under six minutes to play in the third period, then-Greenville pest Krys Barch would screen the net during a Greenville shooting attempt. Everblades defenceman Tim O'Connell checked Barch from behind numerous times, hoping to clear him from in front of the net. Barch, having been fed up with being pressured, turned around hoping to sucker-punch O'Connell. Instead, O'Connell quickly skated away from the crease before Barch turned around, and Barch would end up punching Everblades goalie Tyler Mackay. O'Connell jumped on top of Barch, resulting in a dog pile.
All players on the ice dropped the gloves for a wild line brawl that would see Florida goalie Tyler Mackay and others getting ejected for fighting.
After all the mayhem, Craig Kowalski would take Mackay's place as netminder. Shortly thereafter, the Everblades' Simon Tremblay would scrap with Greenville's Adam Nightingale to end the fiasco. The Everblades would go onto win the game, 4-1, and sweep the series, three games to none.
Ironically, game 2 featured no fights as the Everblades won an overtime thriller by a score of 3-2.
2004 American Conference Finals Edit
Game 5 in the 2004 American Conference Finals was quite a memorable series for the Everblades. The Blades would face the Reading Royals in five games in what would be an epic series. Reading evened the series at home, winning Game 3 and Game 4, respectively. With the score knotted at two for Game 5, the game was sent to overtime.
Jon McNabb of the Everblades would score on a breakaway goal to defeat the Royals in front of a record crowd of 7,080 fans at Germain Arena.
Seaon-by-Season Record Edit
|2008–09||71||49||17||5||0.725||269||187||103||Malcolm Cameron||Lost in round 2|
|2007–08||72||39||25||8||0.597||230||198||86||Gerry Fleming||Lost in round 1|
|2006–07||72||44||22||6||0.611||272||212||94||Gerry Fleming||Lost in Conference Final|
|2005–06||72||48||20||4||0.694||267||208||100||Gerry Fleming||Lost in round 2|
|2004–05||72||42||20||10||0.653||237||192||94||Gerry Fleming||Lost in Kelly Cup Finals|
|2003–04||72||37||25||10||0.583||239||221||84||Gerry Fleming||Lost in Kelly Cup Finals|
|2002–03||72||35||23||14||0.583||239||243||84||Gerry Fleming||Lost in qualifying round|
|2001–02||72||37||27||8||0.569||207||221||82||Gerry Fleming||Lost in round 2|
|2000–01||72||38||26||8||0.583||236||242||84||Bob Ferguson||Lost in round 2|
|1999–00||70||53||15||2||0.757||277||181||108||Bob Ferguson||Lost in round 2|
|1998–99||70||45||20||5||0.679||253||180||95||Bob Ferguson||Lost in round 3|
- NOTE: The 2008-09 team played 71 games because of scheduling changes caused by two teams ceasing operations in December 2008. Four of the five teams (Florida, Charlotte, South Carolina, Mississippi) played 71 games, with Gwinnett playing 72.
All-Time Recordholders Edit
- Games: Brent McDonald - 311
- Goals: Reggie Berg - 320
- Assists: Tom Buckley - 207
- Points: Reggie Berg - 391
- Power Play Goals: Reggie Berg - 32
- Penalty Minutes: Tom Buckley - 422
- Goaltending Games: Marc Magliarditi - 139
- Goaltending Wins: Marc Magliarditi - 139
- Goals Against Average (Min 20 games): Tyler MacKay - 1.92
- Goaltending Save Percentage: Tyler MacKay - .928
Individual Records Edit
- Most Goals - Game: 4 (4 times, last by Saviano, Mar. 31, 2006 vs. PEN)
- Most Assists - Game: 4 (7 times, last by Hartlieb, Feb. 24, 2007 vs. AUG)
- Most Points - Game: 5 ( times, last by Zancanaro, Jan. 5, 2007 vs. CHR)
- Most Shots - Game: 12 (Steve Saviano, Nov. 12, 2005 at Gwinnett)
- Most Penalty Minutes - Game: 37 (Kyle Kos Mar. 22, 2003 at South Carolina)
- Most Saves - game: 58 (Rob Zepp, Dec. 27, 2003 at Gwinnett)
- Most Saves - period: 25 (2 times, last by Zepp, Dec. 27, 2003 at GWI (1st))
- Consecutive Game goal Scoring Streak: 9 (Keith Anderson (10/18/03 - 11/8/03))
- Consecutive Game Assist Streak: 10 (Daniel Sisca (12/9/05 - 12/28/05))
- Consecutive Game Point Streak: 16 (Tom Buckley (10/26/01 - 12/7/01))
- Conseutive Games Started Streak: 15 (twice, last by Craig Kowalski (2/10/07 - 3/10/07))
- Longest Winning Streak: 9 (Tyler MacKay (2/25/05 - 3/19/05))
- Longest Unbeaten Streak: 11 (Tyler MacKay (2/19/05 - 3/19/05) (9-0-2))
- Shutout Streak: 163:43 (Randy Petruk (11/3/01 - 12/14/01))
Retired Numbers Edit
- Reggie Berg- played with Blades from 1999-2007, sweater # 10 is retired.
- Tom Buckley- played with Blades from 1999-2004, sweater # 14 is retired.
Both players' numbers were retired during a pre-game ceremony on Oct.19, 2007, as the Everblades hosted the Mississippi Sea Wolves, in what would be the Sea Wolves' first official regular season game after being placed on a two-year hiatus due to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Banners made with their jersey numbers were hung to the rafters of the Germain Arena.