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Cats (mini) Season Preview: SI/Allen Muir

A fresh new season of South Florida hockey, Jacques Martin-style, approaches! In this series, TLB will be posting links to the best, worst, and indifferent previews of our favorite felines: the 2008-09 Florida Panthers.

Allen Muir, one of the mainstreamers I really enjoy reading, has posted up a preliminary summary of the SE division, if only to whet our appetites:

"Of course, the biggest (and best) change they could make is simply staying healthy. Fewer players and a little less time on the IR could be enough to put Florida over the hump."

Amen to that, bra. The public perception of last year's Panthers club was one of (typical) failure. A more honest view would be one taking into account the horrific revolving-door of man-games lost to injury ("about 405", according to TSN). This is the type of stat which can explain a lost season. I'm not using that as the only reason for a lackluster year - there were many oh so many reasons - but it begins to shed some light on the state of the team, health-wise.