Panthers' controversial move to keep Leafs fans out of their arena.

Panthers' controversial move to keep Leafs fans out of their arena.

The Florida Panthers are trying to prevent fans of the Maple Leafs from attending their home games in round 2.

Jonathan Larivee

A controversial practice that has been utilized by some teams in the Stanley Cup playoffs is once again rearing its ugly head, and it would seem that the only people who will be negatively impacted by this are the fans themselves.

An announcement made on Monday morning has now revealed that the Panthers and FLA Live Arena will be looking to bar ticket sales to residents outside of the United States for the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. This measure is clearly designed to keep fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs out of FLA Live Arena during the Panthers home games, although whether or not it will prove to be effective remains to be seen.

Here is the statement:

FLA Live Arena is located in Sunrise, Florida. Sales to this event will be restricted to residents of the United States. Residency will be based on credit card billing address. Orders by residents outside of the United States will be canceled without notice and refunds given.

The issue of course is that there are many, many, Canadian residents who like to travel down to Florida in the winter months and many of those same fans will regularly attend NHL games in that city as well. There's also an argument to be made that a paying customer should be allowed to attend and watch the game, regardless of what team they may choose to cheer for.

Of course this will only impact direct ticket sales, and only in cases where the Canadians who wish to attend the game can't find someone in Florida to purchase a ticket or tickets on their behalf, as ticket sales on the resale market will not be subject to such restrictions.

Is this a good move by the Florida Panthers? Or should NHL teams consider moving away from this practice in the future?