Thursday, September 20, 2012

What is your favorite Panther nighttime memory?

The Carolina Panthers don't play at night very often. They have done so 25 times -- an average of about 1.4 per year -- since starting play in 1995. I wrote my column about their mixed-bag history in those after-dark games -- they are 10-15 overall in the regular season -- for today's newspaper.

But NFL night games often make for great memories. The lights are bright. The helmets glisten. The game feels more important.  

So what's your favorite night-time memory with the Panthers and why?

It can be a postseason, preseason or regular-season game, and you can have attended it or just seen it on TV somewhere. Mine was on Jan.2, 2004, when the Panthers whipped Dallas, 29-10, in a playoff game in Charlotte. That one had some personal significance, as my wife had had our third child only three days before. I was originally supposed to be off for a week, but she was kind enough to help out on The Observer's team coverage for one night only.

After all, the Panthers have had fewer home playoff games (three) than we have had children (four).
That would have been a hard game to miss.

The best answer or answers to this "best night-time memory" question -- left in a comment below on this blog entry -- wins a free signed copy of my 2004 book "Tales from the Carolina Panthers Sideline."

I will announce the winners on this blog in the comments by Friday morning.

Here's a list of the Panthers' regular-season nighttime games to help get you started:

1995 -- Lost to New Orleans
1996 -- Beat the N.Y. Giants
1997 -- Lost to Washington and San Francisco; Beat Atlanta and Dallas
1998 -- Lost to Buffalo
1999 -- Beat Atlanta
2000 -- Beat St. Louis and Green Bay
2001 -- Lost to San Francisco
2002 -- None
2003 -- Lost to Atlanta
2004 -- Lost to Green Bay and Atlanta
2005 -- Beat Green Bay
2006 -- Lost to Dallas and Philadelphia, beat Tampa Bay
2007 -- Lost to Dallas
2008 -- Beat Tampa Bay, lost to the N.Y. Giants
2009 -- Lost to Dallas and Miami, beat Minnesota
2010 -- Lost to Pittsburgh
2011 -- None

36 comments:

Lee4Panthers said...

Scott, Mine has to be the Tampa Bay game when it was a huge game at the time I think the year was 2008. It was a huge contest as TB was a really good team and their Defense was awesome only allowing like 1 rushing td. Well D-Williams and J-Stewart were awesome and both ran for over 100 yards! Steve Smith had a great game and over 100 yards and a TD and the Defense sacked Jeff Garcia something like 5 times and I really thought this was a statement game for the Panthers.

No_clue777 said...

2008...Tampa Bay....Stadium was electric that night. Have not felt it in the stadium since.

Pacman said...

Watching Deangelo and Stew run all over Tampa Bay in that Monday night game a few years back. Hands down my #3 favorite Panthers game of all time.

No_clue777 said...

2008...Tampa Bay....Stadium was electric that night. Have not felt it in the stadium since.

Daniel said...

My favorite night Panthers game – and one of my favorite Panthers games of all time – was the 38-23 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2008 that put the Panthers in first place for the division.

Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams each had a pair of touchdowns, and I will never forget the brutal stiffarm that Stewart used to send Ronde Barber to the ground.

Even in the preseason of that year fans could see that we had a formidable ground game, and nowhere was this more apparent than in Bank of America stadium on that cold winter’s night, when the fans were cloaked in black and screaming their lungs out for a playoff-bound team.

It’s easy to dwell on the playoff loss and what might have been that season, but I choose to dwell on what was. And that win was special.

Anonymous said...

beating dallas in the playoff game..

Anonymous said...

Agree with the others. The 2008 MNF game here against Tampa Bay. Watching Double Trouble run up and down the field on their defense was awesome. It was my first time at a night game in BofA Stadium. It was cold out, the place was packed shoulder to shoulder and the stadium was just electric. I was hungover for work the next day and my voice was shot. Just an awesome experience. Definitely look forward to seeing some of that magic return. Go Panthers!

Swizzle52 said...

Would have to be that MNF game against Tampa! Stadium was ridiculous that night and we ran all over that great defense! As someone else said, BofA hasn't been like that since.

Hoping to make it like that again tonight!!!! Bring the NOISE Panther fans!!

Tip said...

My favorite of all time was the Dallas playoff victory. I grew up a Redskin fan and have a lifelong dislike of the Cowboys. I had a loud and obnoxious Cowboy fan behind my PSL seats who screamed the whole game. As soon as it was obvious that the Cowboys were done, I turned around and screamed back at her, "How 'bout them Cowboys."

danny said...

Hands down Cowboys playoffs in '04. We had a Cowboys fan talking smack pull $1000 cash out of wallet trying to make a bet with us (we passed). I'll never forget the 70,000+ white towels at kickoff and the loudest boo's I've ever heard when the Cowboy's ran out of the tunnel. The stadium announcer played it to us as well, sort of lowering his voice and trailing off: "The DALLAS Cowboys......" Amazing night.

Tip said...

My favorite of all time was the Dallas playoff victory. I grew up a Redskin fan and have a lifelong dislike of the Cowboys. I had a loud and obnoxious Cowboy fan behind my PSL seats who screamed the whole game. As soon as it was obvious that the Cowboys were done, I turned around and screamed back at her, "How 'bout them Cowboys."

Unknown said...

For me, it's definitely Brad Hoover's Monday Night breakout against Green Bay. I was about 13, and went with my dad. We had good seats--the very bottom of the upper deck, at about the 35 or 40 yard line. One of the Monday Night cameras was actually right in front of us, so we had basically the same view we would have gotten on TV. About the second quarter we started shouting "Hooooov," and more and more of the stadium did to as the game went on. We had to leave early, since it was a school night. On the way back to the car, the stadium exploded--turned out to be for Hoover's touchdown. I started coughing really bad on the way back, because it was a chilly night. I ended up missing school the next day because of it.

So, in summary: The Panthers won, I got to be at the start of a decade of Panther fans shouting "Hooooov," AND I missed school the next day. Winning.

Ronnie Whitworth said...

My favorite game would be the 2005 Green Bay Monday night game! Brett Favre in a Green Bay uniform, Monday Night Football in Charlotte was enough, but that night was a blast! They gave out the white towels and the crowd was fantastic! The panthers won, but Brett started his 4th quarter thing to keep it interesting. I remember leaving and all the fans were chanting and still cheering as we walked out of the stadium. I will never forget that game, my favorite game of all time!

samurai said...

For me it is when i was deployed for Hurricane Katrina. We were in Hammond, LA, at the time. I arranged for me and a handful of my fellow Guardsmen to get out to a local equivalent of Buffalo Wild Wings.

We arrived early in civilian clothes. When i arrived i asked for a table nearest a TV, that i intended to watch the MNF game, and all i request is that the Ice Tea keep coming.

We sat there the whole night, and i got to watch the Panthers beat the Green Bay Packers. The waitress not only kept my glass full, but the wings kept coming hot. When we asked for our bill they told us all no charge. Wow... I tipped my waitress the $50 i had planned on paying, etc. as did all of my companions.

I was in the region doing what i loved, with guys whos company i enjoyed, watching the game that i love, eating food i truly enjoy.

3-October-2005 will remain a favorite memory for the rest of my life. 8)

Adam T said...

I hate to take the Monday night game against Tampa in 2008 since everyone else says that one, but that is my all time favorite as well. That was my first game I ever attended and it definitely was all I could hope for! The rushing attack from Double Trouble was record breaking and Steve Smith had an amazing catch in the end zone! A perfect game for a first time attending Panther fan!

Stef said...

Staying up all night to see the MNF win over Tampa in 2008 was my No. 1. I live in Germany, so add 6 hours. You could feel the great atmosphere even in my living room. It was just awesome! Btw., flew in from overseas last saturday just to see us win sunday and tonight. Go Panthers!

William said...

Definitely the Monday night game vs Tampa in 2008. What made this game so memorable was the combination of the Monday Night Football (game of the week) atmosphere, exciting and competitive game, postseason implications, and the effectiveness, or should I saw DOMINATION, of our running game. Go Panthers!! To all the Kalil haters...Yes we Cam!!

Archie Brousseau said...

Mine was when the Panthers played The Cowboys as well. I had nothing but cowboys fans, that were my friends, around me. I love it that night when everyone that I knew were like "o this is the easiest win that were have ever had". I know when the Panther players were going around the stadium giving our fans the high fives, I got goosebumps all over and did a victory lap/dance to my friends that night. That night deifined the attitude of the CAROLINA PANTHERS AND THEIR FANS!!!!!!

Phatboy Boogaloo said...

September 29th, 1997 - San Francisco vs Carolina - our first Monday Night Football game in Charlotte, NC! The downtown scene was absolutely electric! We were in the National spotlight being viewed by millions around the globe! Everyone in Charlotte had been talking about it for days. Kevin Greene had been released the prior year and was coming back to Charlotte for the 1st time as a 49er. Greene had talked a lot of smack on his way out of town and fans were not the least bit excited to see him back. Unfortunately we lost that game, but you can never take back that feeling building up to kickoff, that still makes the hair stand up on my arms thinking back to that magical night!

\m/Pantherfan\m/ said...

Most definitely the MNF game against Tampa! Fans were on point that evening. You could feel the stadium shake! It was awesome!!

Anonymous said...

Not sure of the year, but I enjoyed watching Brad Hoover run all over Green Bay in his first start at RB. I think it was a Monday night game. Go Cats! (WCU and Panthers)

Anonymous said...

Easy... Monday night Tampa Bay game like every one else said. The game temperature was right cold, but the stadium atmosphere was electric. I think Gruden was in town with his MNF crew and said "Double Trouble" always gave him nightmares as the TB coach.

Anonymous said...

1997 beat Dallas at Texas Stadium Monday Night Football. 23-13.

CHillyDoggy said...

Tampa Bay whippin' was sweet but there was nothing like the Dallas playoff game in our 2nd year... watching Lamar Lathon come around the corner and kill Troy Aikman repeatedly as they were having to throw to try and get back in it since they couldn't run on us... was priceless. That, and breaking Deion's eye socket, was too good to be true. :)

FriscoKTank said...

Scott,

Mine is easily the Panthers MNF game in Dallas in 1997 against The Cowboys. Not only was this the first time I ever got to see The Panthers play live, but we won that game AND I got then Center, Frank Garcia's playing gloves after the game was over, as I was luckily sitting 2 rows behind the Panthers bench.

dallasreese@rocketmail.com said...

Scott,
It wasn't a victory for the team but for me the Thursday nite game against Miami in 2009 was the most special. My son Tyler had never been to an NFL game..the previous year I had been the PA announcer for the West Virginia Mountaineers and he had the opportunity to meet Pat White while there and wanted to see him play for the Dolphins. I was crushed we lost the game(I've been following the Panthers since Clemson in '95) but the look on my son's face when we walked into the open air of the stadium is a memory I will never forget. He was 8 years old at the time and it reminded me of my first game! Special! (I had a blast watching the Dallas playoff game in 2004 from the highest seat in the upper deck as well...those white victory towels we waved made the stadium rock)
Dallas Reese

Chris said...

There is no touching the two home playoff victories over the Cowboys - those are probably the two best home wins in Panthers history. However, the most fun (and quirky) was the 2000 MNF game against Green Bay. The number one thing everyone is going to remember Brad Hoover becoming a folk hero that night. What people don't remember is that Carolina was playing without starters Wesley Walls, Tim Biakabutuka), William Floyd and Donald Hayes on offense - and still handled Brett Favre and the Packers. The other quirky moment was the fan running onto the field late in the game during a play where Favre threw an interception. I can't remember who it was (I seem to remember that it was either Ahman Green for GB or Mike Minter for Carolina), but somebody put a big hit on the drunken fan. I remember hoping that the interception wasn't overturned due to fan interference! Luckily it wasn't and it led to a Panther's TD. Does anyone else remember this?

Anonymous said...

It wasn't technically a night game but it finished after dark. Night game it is.

1997 Cowboys vs. Panthers in the Divisional Playoff game. The Panthers whipped up on the Cowboys along with knocking both Deion Sanders and Michael Irvin out of the game. I have never been to a game since with that kind of excitement!!! It was the first playoff win for the Panthers and one that cemented me as a Panthers fan for life!!!

swiznami said...

Can't believe nobody has said the double overtime playoff win against the Rams. I was working as a barternder at the time and none of the customers cared that I was focused on the TV because they were also wrapped up in that game. The final play was ridiculous.

Clay K. said...

I'll never forget going to the 1996 playoff game against Dallas Cowboys. It was second Panthers game, followed by the Steelers game where Chad Cota intercepted a Pittsburg touchdown allowing Carolina to escape and win the WEST at the time.

Recent memory, the game against New York on a Sunday night - I believe - with Matt Moore taking flight was an awesome win!!!

nick Wall said...

December 20th and 2009 Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings came to town for a Sunday night game, school was out and it was my 18th birthday. My mom was able to get last minute tickets from a family friend in the upper bowl in perhaps one of the coldest football games I have ever been to in my life. By this point in the season Matt Moore was starting at quarterback. I think it was sometime in the second quarter, we were near Minnesota's end zone, and Matt Moore throws a 1 yard touchdown to Brad Hoover giving us a 6 point lead. I can picture that play to this day. We went on to win that game 26-7 against a team that ended up having a better record than us. It was one amazing birthday!

Anonymous said...

No questions about it. Dallas '04 playoff game. Unbelievable electricity and a huge win on our way to the Superbowl!

Anonymous said...

2000 -- Beat St. Louis (FG by J Kasay with 1 second to play..., remember... the Rams was the champions)

From BA ARGENTINA... GO PANTHERS!!!!


Shyriu

Unknown said...

Mine was the game in 2000 against Green Bay. I will never forget it. It was the night before my first ever deployment and I was a nervous wreck, and a bit scared of what was to come over the next year. The Panthers were on prime time and I lost myself in the game. Brad Hoover rushed for over 100 yards and Moose had over 100 yards receiving. I still relive it sometimes. But the anxiety and stress of my first deployment the very next day was put aside for 3 magical hours. Thank you Panthers.

Unknown said...

Mine was the game in 2000 against Green Bay. I will never forget it. It was the night before my first ever deployment and I was a nervous wreck, and a bit scared of what was to come over the next year. The Panthers were on prime time and I lost myself in the game. Brad Hoover rushed for over 100 yards and Moose had over 100 yards receiving. I still relive it sometimes. But the anxiety and stress of my first deployment the very next day was put aside for 3 magical hours. Thank you Panthers.

Mike said...

2000, Green Bay on Monday Night Football. Seats were among the worst in the entire stadium, at the base of the lighting tower so it was actually in darkness. We were so far into the corner that I couldn't even see when the ball was fumbled and recovered by the Panthers. But it was my first live NFL game ever and that's all that mattered!