Last nights loss to the Detroit Red Wings in Sunrise Florida showed once again that the combination of mistakes, lack of talent and lack of scoring to a superior team will bite you in the arse every game. Two goals in the first period by the Wings set the stage for a long night for the Florida Panthers in which they tried their hardest to come back, but just don’t have enough.
Detroit was all over the Panthers early, and as their play usually dictates, they pounced on mistakes and made the Panthers pay. Ex-Panther, brief that it was, Todd Bertuzzi scored two goals, which was driving Rat Pack partner Dave absolutely crazy. Not a big fan of Big Bert, Dave let the Twitter universe know what he thought of him. Often. It was G-rated! The Cats had their chances and on a couple of occasions some guy named Joey stood up to the challenge. A backup goaltender who looked like an all-star. Here’s the TSN boxscore from last night.
Tonight Florida goes into face the Tampa Bay Lighting. The Panthers are now nine points out of the last playoff spot in the conference and fading fast. I believe that if they lose tonight the roster will start to be picked apart. The trades that have happened so far have almost been almost blockbuseter in fashion. Florida is due to do something and with many teams jockeying for a playoff spot or looking for that extra piece, we seem to be one of the places to look.
Saying that however these games are still to be won. This unit can’t give up. This unit still needs to play as though the season matters and that every game is winnable. 60 minutes of hockey need to be played. As much as the Panthers need to play to make the playoffs their opponents for the most part are playing for either a better position in them or for a spot themselves.
Tampa is always a dangerous team. Stamkos, St. Louis, Lecalvalier, lead the offence. Yesterday they picked up defenceman Eric Brewer from the St. Louis Blues. A big burly hard nosed type that could be exactly what they need for their playoff push. Stamkos leads the team with 40 goals and 75 points. The kid is a joy to watch and will be scoring against us for years to come.
I love the job that Steve Yzerman is doing in Tampa. Getting them back to respectablilty in one short season has bee a work of art. Moves that have been made to round out a roster that already had some good parts, he’s basically putting the puzzle together. Head Coach Guy Boucher has also impressed, and his players seem to enjoy playing for him.
I never imagined I would say this, but Tampa is a model that we could follow. Our year seems to be over playoff wise, but the restructuring can take place just as fast. At least that’s what I’m hoping for.
Here’s your pregame from TSN.
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