Florida Panthers Gameday Preview: Cats Host the Red Wings

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 19: Jonathan Huberdeau #11 of the Florida Panthers celebrates after scoring the game winning goal during a shootout against the Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena on October 19, 2018 in Washington, DC. The Panthers defeated the Capitals 6-5. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 19: Jonathan Huberdeau #11 of the Florida Panthers celebrates after scoring the game winning goal during a shootout against the Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena on October 19, 2018 in Washington, DC. The Panthers defeated the Capitals 6-5. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Tonight at 7 P.M. EST, the Florida Panthers will host the Detroit Red Wings at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL.

After starting 0-2-2, losing all four contests each by one goal, the Florida Panthers earned their first win of the season on Friday night.

They did it against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Washington Capitals no less, earning a 6-5 shootout victory.

After tonight’s contest, they’ll get three days off before a three-game road trip against the New York Rangers, the New York Islanders, and the New Jersey Devils.

Tonight’s opponent, the Detroit Red Wings, have started their season off 0-5-2, and are likely the worst team in the National Hockey League.

Tonight’s game marks the end of a four-game road trip for them. They lost to the Boston Bruins, 8-2, the Montreal Canadians, 7-3, and the Tampa Bay Lightning, 3-1.

After this, they’ll go home and host the Carolina Hurricanes, the Winnipeg Jets, and the Dallas Stars.

When Last We Met

The last time the Panthers and Red Wings played was on February 3rd last season, with 17,987 in attendance at BB&T Center. The Panthers earned a 3-2 win, pushing their record to 22-22-6 while dropping the Red Wings to 21-22-8.

Aaron Ekblad and Jonathan Huberdeau scored a goal with a helper each, Keith Yandle had two assists, and Aleksander Barkov also lit the lamp.

Nick Bjugstad and Evgeni Dadonov also assisted on a goal each, in front of netminder Harri Sateri, who turned aside 26-of-28 Detroit shots.

Huberdeau scored the final marker with 8.9 seconds remaining in the game to earn the victory and deny the Wings even the ‘loser’ point.

"“We don’t give them any points. We’ve just got to get on a roll. That’s what we need to have a chance to make the playoffs. We’ve just got to keep going.” – Huberdeau, as quoted by Alain Poupart on NHL.com."

Florida’s Last Game

In the Florida Panthers’ last game, just last night, the Cats scored four times in the first period and eventually collected their first win of the season.

Huberdeau (2) and first star Vincent Trocheck (2) scored a goal with two assists each, Dadonov (3) collected a goal and a helper, while Jared McCann (1) and Colton Sceviour (1) each also split the pipes for the good guys.

Florida Panthers
WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 19: Vincent Trocheck #21 of the Florida Panthers celebrates after scoring against the Washington Capitals during a shootout at Capital One Arena on October 19, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Huberdeau, who was named the second star, potted the game-winner in the fourth round of the shootout.

Trocheck and Barkov were also successful in the deciding event. James Reimer earned no-decision after allowing four goals on 20 shots. Relief goalie Michael Hutchinson turned aside 10-of-11 and earned the win.

"“We got rolling and shot ourselves in the foot a little bit. But we found a way to win tonight.” – Panthers coach Bob Boughner, as quoted by Brian McNally on NHL.com."

Detroit’s Last Game

On Thursday night, the Red Wings lost their seventh game to begin the season to the Tampa Bay Lightning, 3-1. Luke Glendening scored Detroit’s only goal, with assists by Trevor Daley and Justin Abdelkader. Detroit goaltender Jimmy Howard made 28-of-30 saves to take the loss.

"“We battled for 60 minutes, we didn’t get the outcome that we wanted, but it’s a lot better effort than the last couple of games.” – Howard, as quoted on NHL.com by Corey Long."

All-Time Series

The Florida Panthers and the Detroit Red Wings have met 44 times in total, and the Panthers have gone 17-17-5-5 for a perfect .500 points percentage. That ranks as Florida’s 12th best points percentage against the 30 other teams in the NHL.

This Day in History

October 20th is not a good one for the Florida Panthers. They’re 3-8-1-1 in 13 games on this date and have lost their last six in a row. Their best win was in 1999 when defenseman Robert Svehla scored a goal with two assists to lead the Panthers to a 5-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks.


Florida Panthers: 1-2-2, four points, on pace for 66 points, .400 points percentage, last five: O-L-L-O-W, seventh in the Atlantic Division, 15th in the Eastern Conference, 28th in the NHL. Playoff Percentage: 30.6%

Detroit Red Wings: 0-5-2, two points, on pace for 23 points, .143 points percentage, last five: O-L-L-L-L, eighth in the Atlantic Division, 16th in the Eastern Conference, 31st in the NHL. Playoff Percentage: 6.8%

Starting Lineup




Injury Report

Luongo is on injured reserve with a Grade 1 MCL sprain. He will miss from two-to-four weeks.

Derek MacKenzie has missed the last four games and is questionable with an upper-body injury.

After a high hit from Alex Ovechkin, Mark Pysyk is doubtful for tonight.

Florida Panthers
TAMPA, FL – SEPTEMBER 25: Florida Panthers defenseman Keith Yandle (3) and Florida Panthers center Derek MacKenzie (17) in the first period of the NHL preseason game between the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning on September 25, 2018, at Amalie Arena in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

More from Panthers News


Goals: Huberdeau moved into a tie for 10th last night with Ray Whitney, and will break that tie with his next goal, his 98th. Ekblad’s next marker will give him 54, tying him with Tomas Fleischmann and Tom Fitzgerald in 21st in Panthers history. Dadonov’s next goal will give him 42, tying him with Gord Murphy in 35th all-time.

Assists: Dadonov tied Niklas Hagman in 49th last night with his 50th Panthers assist, and can pass him tonight. With two more assists, Keith Yandle will tie Fleischmann with his 91st assist, in 21st on the Panthers’ all-time leaderboard. Bjugstad will tie Bill Lindsay in 18th with his next, number 98. Two more assists for Barkov will tie him in ninth with Nathan Horton, with 153.

Points: Yandle tied Ed Jovanovski last night with his 102nd Panthers point, and with two more, will tie Bryan McCabe in 38th.

Florida Panthers
SUNRISE, FL – OCTOBER 13: Keith Yandle #3 of the Florida Panthers skates for position against the Vancouver Canucks at the BB&T Center on October 13, 2018 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Wins: Reimer’s next win will be his 41st as a Florida Panther, moving him past Scott Clemmensen into sole possession of fifth on the all-time list.

Stat Leaders

Goals: Dadonov – 3, Trocheck, Huberdeau, Barkov, Frank Vatrano – 2

Assists: Trocheck, Yandle – 5, Dadonov, Huberdeau, Denis Malgin – 3

Points: Trocheck – 7, Dadonov – 6, Huberdeau, Yandle – 5

Plus/Minus: Nick Bjugstad +4, Dadonov, Barkov +3

Hits: Trocheck, Petrovic – 14, Troy Brouwer, Mark Pysyk – 9

Blocked Shots: Petrovic – 10, Yandle – 8, Brouwer, Pysyk – 6

Faceoff Win Percentage: Barkov – 52.1%, Trocheck – 50.5%, Juho Lammikko – 45.5%

dark. Next. Another Slow Start? Not So Fast

Thanks for reading today’s preview. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and subscribe to our daily newsletter to keep up with the Florida Panthers.