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Florida Panthers at Winnipeg Jets - Game 63 Preview

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Florida: 30-20-12 (72PTS)
Winnipeg: 30-27-8 (68PTS)
Season Series: 3-0-1
Game Time: 8:30 PM EST
Television: Fox Sports Florida, TSN
Radio: 560 WQAM

The Panthers make their final visit of the season to Winnipeg tonight to face the Jets. Winnipeg has been good to the Panthers so far this season; they've picked up wins in their two games there. Their only loss against the Jets this season was in a shootout at home on Halloween. On the other hand, the teams have been in shootouts twice, so the Jets have points in two of the games played this season. The story in this one is again the same: the Panthers are trying to hold their three point lead in the Southeast Division and the Jets are trying to get into a playoff spot. They're sitting four points behind the Panthers and one behind the Capitals, putting them in third place in the division and ninth in the Eastern Conference. While the Jets have been slightly better than the Capitals the last couple of weeks, they will need to win a few more games than they have been to pass them in the standings and stay ahead. On the Panthers' side, while they're getting closer that playoff berth every week, they do not have the division wrapped up and need to perform, especially in their remaining games against division opponents.

More from our Winnipeg cohorts at Arctic Ice Hockey.
Panthers at Jets coverage at SB Nation.
SB Nation Preview.
LBC Game Thread will open 30 minutes prior to puck drop.

News and Notes

Last meeting

The Panthers edged the Jets 2-1 at home. Scott Clemmensen had the win and Sean Bergenheim the game winner.

Last game

Marcel Goc had a goal in his return, Mike Santorelli had two and the Panthers beat the Maple Leafs 5-3 in Toronto on Tuesday night. New Panther Wojtek Wolski again had a point, setting up Marcel Goc for the opening goal thirteen seconds into the game.

Lineup

Kris Versteeg will miss seven to ten days with what has been described as soreness. Tomas Kopecky missed the last game and may miss tonight's game with a minor ailment that has been described as "day to day." If Kopecky plays, it will probably be John Madden or Krys Barch in the press box. Mike Santorelli has probably played his way out of the coach's doghouse with his two goal night in Toronto.

Injuries

  • F Scottie Upshall (core), 2/1, 6 to 8 weeks
  • D Dmitry Kulikov (knee), 1/21, 6 to 8 weeks
  • F Matt Bradley (concussion), 2/19, indefinitely
  • F Marco Sturm (lower body), 2/2, unknown

Possible Scratches

  • F Kris Versteeg (lower body)
  • F Tomas Kopecky (unknown)

Starting goaltenders:

Jose Theodore will face off against Ondrej Pavelec.

Lines

Forwards
  1. Bergenheim-Weiss-Samuelsson
  2. Fleischmann-Goc-Wolski
  3. Santorelli-Matthias-Skille
  4. Madden-Smithson-Barch
Defense
  1. Campbell-Garrison
  2. Gudbranson-Jovanovski
  3. Weaver-Ellerby