Monday Caterwaul - Panthers GameDay Open Forum

Welcome to Cats' Blackout Week: wherein we - the Illustrious Twelve - must hunt for live video feeds in order to catch a single moment of action in three of the next five games, including tonight at home against the Predators.

Here's a thought: would be mighty fine if NHL GameCenter Live provided an in-house feed for those of us unable to attend. They've got a button for it, though it's been hit-and-miss in the past.

It appears just about everyone who cares has resigned themselves to the stark reality that Florida will again miss the postseason, with none of the flash and madness of last season's statistical miss. The process of which has since been altered, of course. Smile wide!

Many comments here at The Box of late have reflected what Fox Sports Florida's Frank Forte candidly wrote of recently:

"As a fan, with the playoffs all but a mathematical impossibility given the Panthers (have) shown no evidence they are capable of putting together a significant winning streak, do you hope the team loses to enhance their draft possibilities?"

SportsClubStats suggests the Cats are cooked unless a record of no less than 6-1-1 over their final eight is achieved, allowing for a 1.1% shot at the 8th seed. Eyeballing those dreadful numbers, Forte's question is well beyond valid.

No Florida fan worth his collection of sagging rubber rats wants the team to lose; there's the overhyped "pride" thing at work, and all. Kinda tired of playing the role of spoiler, however, year after year.

But would your heart break if Carolina and Toronto just happened to win more games than the Panthers cobble together to close out the year? Perhaps that's the way to look at it without coming off as traitorous or even worse.

With the postseason now a pipe dream, it's in the best interest for the future of this franchise to secure the highest possible draft lottery selection, whether to pick or trade. Everything else is secondary.

Live Game Forum tonight at 7pm.

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