After playing three roadies in a four-day span, the Florida Panthers enjoy another off day before they face the Colorado Avalanche Friday night at the BB&T Center. The tilt will be Florida's last home date in the month of January.
With February's Olympic break rapidly approaching, the Panthers find themselves seven points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets, winners of a franchise-record seven straight, for the Eastern Conference's final wildcard spot. Florida's modest two-game winning streak has pushed their record to 5-3-1 in 2014's opening month, this coming on the heels on an impressive 8-5-1 mark in December.
Despite the improved performance under interim coach Peter Horachek, the Cats are still stuck among the NHL's bottom five teams, and with 50 games already in the book, they will likely need to amass at least 45 or so points over their final 32 games to squeak into the playoffs.
Tonight's slate of games sees ten Eastern Conference clubs in action, including the aforementioned Blue Jackets, who play host to the Philadelphia Flyers. Feel free to chime in below, as your comments power the Caterwaul.