The Florida Panthers held an in-team scrimmage on Wednesday night. The idea was to hold the scrimmage in the evening to simulate the experience of a regular season game. Lets just hope when the real games start we see a little bit more scoring.
The game was held at the Panthers Saveology.com Iceplex to a standing room only crowd of eager hockey fans. (source) In the matchup between Team Red and Team White, neither side could get on the board as goalies Jose Theodore and Scott Clemmensen stood their ground and looked to be in mid-season form. Whether the lack of scoring was due to excellent goaltending or poor offensive play is irrelevant. Fans should not read too much into the score or lack there of. The game was simply a way for coaches to get a feel for the team and for players to get a feel for playing with each other in a game like situation. Kevin Dineen summed up the goals of the scrimmage saying, “I think we accomplished everything we wanted to tonight. We wanted to get a good feel for an evening game. We wanted to have a high tempo pace and fortunately for us, I think we had a very high turnout by a bunch of people that are excited to see hockey back.”
The game also featured two shootouts in which players did succeed in beating the goaltenders. Jonathan Huberdeau, Peter Mueller, Mike Santorelli and Marek Svatos all scored on Scott Clemmensen while Shawn Matthias put one past Jose Theodore. (Source) The Panthers will face-off against the Carolina Hurricanes in their regular season opener this coming Saturday night. Here are some other training camp notes:
- Huberdeau, Mueller and Alex Kovalev have been playing together on a line in practice. It appears that this could be the second line Saturday night. This would mean Kovalev makes the team which is no surprise as he has impressed in camp.
- Forwards Marcel Goc and Sean Bergenheim have been out with injury (source) . Their abscense opens spots for players like Alex Kovalev and maybe one of the younger forwards.
- Aside from Huberdeau, the other rookie I think we could see making the team is Drew Shore. Talk coming from camp says he has impressed and looks NHL ready.
- Erik Gudbranson could miss some games early on with a shoulder injury (source) and with Dmitry Kulikov still unsigned there looks to be some room on the back-end for some new guys to make the team.