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Monday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Open Forum

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Cats in a good spot as NHL reopens for stretch run

Toronto Maple Leafs VS Florida Panthers Rick Madonik/Toronto Star via Getty Images

The NHL returns to regularly scheduled programming after an entertaining All-Star Weekend in St. Louis. Sunrise will play host, for a second time, to the league’s best next year at the BB&T Center, which could have a new name by then,

On to more pressing matters... The Panthers enter the week in third place in the Atlantic Division, four points ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs and one behind the second place Tampa Bay Lightning. Florida and Toronto have played an even 49 games while the Bolts have played 48.

While the Cats off until Saturday afternoon, the Maple Leafs and Lightning will be in action tonight as the regular season slate kicks off the stretch run with six games.

Toronto will be in Nashville to face an increasingly desperate Predators team that is also looking to make up ground in the playoff race.

Tampa Bay is in Dallas take on the Stars, who are currently holding down three place in the Central Division. This game gets the national spotlight 8 p.m. on NBCSN.

The Predators and Stars can really help the Panthers out by posting wins in regulation over Florida’s Atlantic Division rivals.

Perhaps we should adopt the Stars as our team this week as they will host the Maple Leafs on Wednesday.

Tonight’s games

  • Washington (33-11-5 71P) at MONTREAL (22-21-7 51P) 7 p.m.
  • New Jersey (17-24-7 41P) at OTTAWA (17-23-8 42P) 7:30 p.m.
  • TORONTO (25-17-7 57P) at Nashville (22-18-7 51P) 8 p.m.
  • TAMPA BAY (29-15-5 62P) at Dallas (27-17-4 58P) 8 p.m.
  • St. Louis (30-11-8 68P) at Vancouver (27-18-4 58P) 10 p.m.
  • Anaheim (19-24-5 43P) at San Jose (21-25-4 46P) 10:30 p.m.