Yesterday, we passed along word that a Thursday preseason game between the Bolts and Panthers in Sunrise had been cancelled due to Hurricane Matthew.
Today, the two sides decided not to reschedule it.
The storm, expected to hit Florida either Thursday evening, strengthened yet again on Thursday as many residents evacuated the area.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott pleaded with residents to follow evacuation orders.
“Do not surf. Do not go on the beach. This will kill you,” he said at a press conference Thursday. “There is no reason not to leave.”
Scott activated 2,500 members of the National Guard to assist with the storm and warned Floridians that projected winds of 100 to 150 mph will destroy houses and “millions will lose power, possibly for a long period of time.”
“My goal is to make sure everyone is prepared,” he said, urging residents to fill up on gas and other supplies now. “Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate.”
The cancellation means Florida will play just one more exhibition game — on Saturday, Oct. 8 against the Devils — before opening the season against those same Devils on Thursday, Oct. 13.
The Lightning, meanwhile, will wrap their preseason on Saturday against Nashville, then open next Thursday at home against Detroit.