Florida Panthers: It’s Time to Move on From Bob Boughner

SUNRISE, FL - DECEMBER 28: Florida Panthers Head Coach Bob Boughner directs his team from the bench against the Philadelphia Flyers at the BB
SUNRISE, FL - DECEMBER 28: Florida Panthers Head Coach Bob Boughner directs his team from the bench against the Philadelphia Flyers at the BB /

As the Florida Panthers’ season comes to a bitter end, it has become quite obvious that Head Coach Bob Boughner should be let go.

Dating back to the 2017-18 season, the Florida Panthers struggled early on with consistency as they continued to hang around the .500 mark.

With a new coach in place as well as a new vision, the results were acceptable as they were expected to struggle and make mistakes throughout the season.

However, the Panthers got things in shape and made a late run that should’ve put them into the postseason. But, in typical Panthers’ fashion, they missed by just one point.

Well, it seems like an eternity since the 2017-18 season ended. With optimism running high, the entire Panthers’ organization and fans were extremely hopeful in thinking that this season would produce a real shot at making the Stanley Cup playoffs.

There were even some who picked the Panthers as a trendy pick to make it all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals to win it.

However, the Cats came out of the gates with their legs stuck in the mud. While many thought that the Panthers would eventually get their feet moving and pick up the slack, they continued their normal trend of inconsistency, which made it tough to compete in the incredibly hard Atlantic Division.

At some points during the season, it looked like the Panthers would get it together, but with awful defense and leaky goaltending, the Cats were never able to grasp any of the magic they had from the previous season.

Although it may be easy to blame their defensemen or their inconsistent goaltending, most of the blame falls on Head Coach Bob Boughner.

With the amount of talent that the Panthers have on their roster, it’s almost inexcusable that the Panthers weren’t even able to make a late push or run at a playoff spot.

Yes, the players are responsible for the type of effort they put out on the ice, but coaching probably held back the Panthers from showing their true potential this year.

With the Panthers’ time to win being now, they have to move on from Boughner and look to a veteran coach that can lead them in the right direction.

If the Panthers do decide to bring Boughner back for his third season, it will be a huge mistake. Panther fans can already see the Cats struggling mightily to begin the season before Boughner is fired and Jack Capuano is named the interim Head Coach.

The result most likely? Another lost season, and another season where the Panthers waste the incredible talent of their star players that they have on their team.

This is a nightmare situation that the Panthers’ organization must avoid if they want to stay relevant in the league.

Ever since the Panthers’ odds to make the playoffs started to slip increasingly, General Manager, Dale Tallon, has become more vocal in saying that he will spend to the maximum this offseason.

With notable players like Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky rumored to be interested in joining the Cats, this is an opportunity that the Panthers cannot flush down the toilet.

By hiring a veteran coach like Joel Quenneville or even Alain Vigneault, the Panthers would put themselves in a position to be among the top contenders in the league.

Handing the keys of one of the most talented teams in the NHL to a qualified veteran coach would set up the Panthers to have not only one successful season but many more in the future. It’s critical for the Cats to look to hire one of these two coaches as soon as the season ends.

Even though it seems like we say this every offseason, the Panthers are about to enter one of the most crucial offseasons in franchise history.

If the Panthers fail to put together a playoff appearance next season, they could lose the faith of some of their star players, but most importantly, their fanbase as well.

It would be an absolute shame to lose some of the superstars they have simply because they couldn’t get the coaching situation figured out.

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It’s up to the front office to make the right decision and hire the veteran coach that the franchise needs.