Now that a majority of Panthers fans - us included - have subscribed to the mindset that this season is over, playoff-wise, tonight is the perfect time to begin scoreboard watching from a bizarro-world aspect.
As most of us eagerly hope for a juicy lottery spot in the coming weeks, following - and cheering on - the success of clubs near Florida in the standings seems not only natural given what local fans have endured, but logical and self-serving.
"Pride" is a wonderful attribute, but this eroded fanbase has had enough Aprils "played with pride" to fill, well, a decade. And besides...we're not rooting against the Cats...
Who we're pulling for tonight (Panthers currently have 72 points and 0.2% chance of making the post-season going into this evening's games):
ATL (78 points) at TOR (69 Points): Game of the night. No question about this one: it pains me, but Go Leafs Go.
NYR (76p) at NYI (72p): Isles need an OT or SO victory; in any case, both clubs need the points to "help" us.
TAM (72p) at COB (75p): Das Bolts just gained a gaggle of very temporary Stamkos fans.