WATCH: Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel pumps up Panthers fans at Stanley Cup final Game 1

McDaniel drew the attention of the crowd by being the one man hype train before the Stanley Cup Final Game 1 in Florida.

WATCH: Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel pumps up Panthers fans at Stanley Cup final Game 1

Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel riles up the fans at Stanley Cup finals in Florida (Image via IMAGO/ X)

Mike McDaniel took a detour after Saturday’s practice at Miami Gardens. The Miami Dolphins head coach showed up at the Stanley Cup Final at Amerant Bank Arena.

Wearing a white Florida Panthers jersey, McDaniel was given the job of riling up the local fans. He had the bright idea of sounding the battle drum, announcing the start of the 2024 Stanley Cup final between the Panthers and Edmonton Oilers.

McDaniel took a mallet in his hand and started pounding on the drum with all his might. In between the drumming, he would pause to make sure fans were in sync with the rhythm or not.

It did the trick because the Panthers took an early 2-0 lead as Carter Verhaeghe scored just 4 minutes into the game followed by Evan Rodriguez. Oiler went into defensive mode to avoid a drubbing. However, Eetu Luostarinen, adding a third, handed the Panthers a 1-0 lead in the series.

The 41-year-old McDaniel did hint after Thursday’s practice that he would not miss the final.

Absolutely. I mean, Do I have a pulse? I do. I’ll be there watching.
Mike McDaniel said

This wasn’t the first time Mike McDaniel attended a Panthers game. Last year he witnessed the Eastern Conference Game 4 between the Panthers and the Carolina Hurricanes, which Florida won 4-3 to advance to the Finals.

Mike McDaniel weighs in on the rule change in kickoffs and returns.

One of the biggest questions heading into the 2024 NFL season is the impact of the kickoff and return rule change made by the NFL committee earlier this year. In order to make the game more thrilling and engaging, the league authorities decided that players aren’t allowed to move until a returner fields the ball or it hits the ground inside the landing zone.

WATCH: Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel pumps up Panthers fans at Stanley Cup final Game 1
Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel with cornerback Jalen Ramsay (Image via IMAGO)

McDaniel added that it would not be surprising to see top receivers or running backs asking for permission to line up during the special team’s operations.

I think it gives you more flexibility to get starters on that unit for various reasons. Overall, it wouldn’t shock me if every No. 1 receiver and every No. 1 running back in the league is raising their hands to return kicks [by] Week 4.
Mike McDaniel said per NBC Sports

The Dolphins AFC rivals and reigning Super Bowl Champions, the Kansas City Chiefs have already started to piece their move together. Instead of keeping Harrison Butker for the kickoffs, they might replace him with safety Justin Reid.

In case you missed it: