Since John Vanbiesbrouck retired over a decade ago, there hasn’t been much success for the state of Florida’s hockey team (Sorry Tampa Bay Lightning). Last year the team struggled with injuries, and though this year they have steered clear of the trainers room, they are off to a below average start and it would be surprising to see the Blackhawks struggle with the muzzled Panthers. Here are some thoughts about the 2013-2014 Florida Panthers:
5. It’s a reunion! Former Blackhawks is now making personnel decisions for the Panthers. Kris Versteeg, Brian Campbell, and Tomas Kopecky will greet some of their former teammates on the ice. Let’s just hope that if they go to dinner together before or after the game that Campbell offers to pick up the check.
4. Remember me? Scott Gomez is now free of his absurd contract and the expectations that went along with it. Now he has more of a mentor role in Florida and though the production isn’t what it used to be, he seems more comfortable without the heavy burden of trying to carry the load on offense. Between him and Campbell, no teammate should have to pay for a meal on the road.
3. The Panthers better hope they play great defense tonight because they are just not going to put goals on the board. The team is among the bottom of the NHL in goals per game and shots per game. Whoever mans the net for the ‘Hawks is going to look like a super stud.