Saturday Caterwaul: Panthers GameDay Open Forum

SUNRISE, FL - NOVEMBER 3: Shawn Matthias #18 of the Florida Panthers attempts to skate over the top of Brent Seabrook #7 of the Chicago Blackhawks to get to the puck on November 3, 2011 at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida. The Blackhawks defeated the Panthers 3-2 in a shoot out. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Florida forward Shawn Matthias has struggled offensively as much as any of his teammates in recent games, going pointless over the last three since scoring against Ottawa on February 15. His numbers for the season appear to favor meetings with Saturday night's opponent, however: 2G/1A, plus-3 and a gamewinner in 2 matches vs the Hurricanes. Career against Carolina? 8 points (4G) in 13 games; not too lousy for a third (and at times, fourth) line center.

The Eastern Front

Rank

Team

GP

W

L

OT

PTS

GF

GA

Home

Away

L10

Streak

1

NY Rangers

59

38

15

6

82

164

122

19-7-2

19-8-4

6-3-1

OT 1

2

Boston

59

36

20

3

75

195

136

18-10-2

18-10-1

4-5-1

OT 1

3

Winnipeg

63

30

26

7

67

161

178

19-9-3

11-17-4

6-3-1

Won 1

4

New Jersey

60

35

21

4

74

169

164

16-11-3

19-10-1

7-2-1

Lost 1

5

Philadelphia

60

33

20

7

73

198

183

14-10-5

19-10-2

3-6-1

Lost 1

6

Pittsburgh

60

34

21

5

73

186

160

18-8-2

16-13-3

5-4-1

Won 1

7

Ottawa

62

32

22

8

72

190

185

16-11-3

16-11-5

5-3-2

Won 4

8

Florida

59

27

20

12

66

146

165

14-8-8

13-12-4

4-5-1

OT 1

9

Washington

61

30

26

5

65

165

174

20-8-2

10-18-3

3-6-1

Won 1

10

Toronto

61

29

25

7

65

182

186

16-10-5

13-15-2

3-6-1

Lost 1

11

Buffalo

61

27

27

7

61

152

177

16-11-7

11-16-0

6-3-1

Won 3

12

Tampa Bay

60

27

27

6

60

169

201

18-9-2

9-18-4

5-4-1

Lost 1

13

NY Islanders

61

26

27

8

60

144

179

14-14-5

12-13-3

5-5-0

Won 1

14

Carolina

61

23

26

12

58

160

184

16-12-4

7-14-8

5-2-3

OT 1

15

Montreal

62

24

28

10

58

161

171

11-14-8

13-14-2

5-4-1

Lost 3

*

Why last night rocked:

  • VAN over NJ, 2-1 (REG); a positive if only because someone had to slow down the Devils, owners of a 9-1-1 record before Friday

Why last night jonesed:

  • WSH over MTL, 4-1; wheels continue to spin for Habs, we'll see how they respond tomorrow in Sunrise

Panthers Playoff Update:

Why tonight is a Big Deal in SoFla, beyond the obvious:

Focusing on clubs within 6 points of Panthers (66P); teams FLA needs to lose in bold

  • STL at WPG (67P), 2 p.m.; you know the drill here
  • WSH (65P) at TOR (65P), 7; either club winning in regulation is technically fine, but we're traveling the Win The Division route and siding with the Leafs
  • BUF (61P) at NYR, 7; Gotta admit: Sabres caught me off-guard here

Next up for the Cats:

Did you know:

  • Per Yahoo!: "While [Kirk] Muller’s club has a conference-low 58 points, the Hurricanes have points in 14 of their last 17 games and play their next four at home. Carolina is 11-3-2 in Raleigh since losing five straight there." Panthers are 2-0 (one in OT) vs the Canes in 2011-12.

Friday’s Organizational News:

Today's Updates:

  • Panthers have acquired F Wojtek Wolski from NYR
  • F Michal Repik & D Jon Matsumoto reassigned to SA

Friday’s NHL Transaction:

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