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Frank Vatrano Is Back, Harbors No Ill Will Toward the Florida Panthers

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Frank Vatrano is mobbed by his Florida Panthers teammates after scoring the game-winning goal against the San Jose Sharks on March 15. He was traded to the New York Rangers the following day. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

SUNRISE — Frank Vatrano saw his time end with the Florida Panthers in the most Frank Vatrano way possible. 

On March 15, Vatrano helped his Panthers rally from a slow start in San Jose with the game-tying goal in the third period before he won it with a beautiful goal in overtime.

“I get two goals in San Jose, we get the win and I am traded nine hours later,” he said with a laugh on Sunday afternoon from the visitors’ locker room at FLA Live Arena.

Yes, not long after Vatrano’s heroics in San Jose, the Panthers traded him to the New York Rangers in a cap-saving move before the NHL Trade Deadline.

Today, for the first time since the trade, Vatrano is back in South Florida as the Panthers play host to his Anaheim Ducks at 1 p.m.

Vatrano is happy to be back — adding he never wanted to leave in the first place.

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