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GameDay Caterwaul: Florida Panthers vs Columbus Blue Jackets

Cats return to Sunrise for four-game homestand

NHL: Columbus Blue Jackets at Florida Panthers Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Panthers (28-12-5 61P) vs Blue Jackets (15-22-9 39P)

  • WHEN: 7:00 p.m. ET
  • WHERE: BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL
  • ON THE TUBE: Bally Sports Florida, Bally Sports Ohio
  • ON THE DIAL: 560 WQAM (D/B), 640 WMEN (PB), 1370 WAXE (TC), Thunder 100.3 (Keys)
  • SOCIALS: #FlaPanthers, #CBJ, #CBJvsFLA, @LitterBoxCats, LBC FaceBook
  • ENEMY INTEL: The Cannon
  • FLA IN SEASON SERIES: Game 7 of 8 (5-0-1)
  • LAST MEETING: FLA 5, @CBJ 4 (OT) - (Recap) - 3/11/2021
  • NEXT MEETING: April 20, 2021
  • PROJECTED STARTERS: Bobrovsky (16-7-2 .907/ 2.86 0SO) vs Merzlikins (6-10-2 .910/ 2.97 1SO)
  • PLAYER STATS: Florida / Columbus

Scouting Report

The Columbus Blue Jackets will head on the road to BB&T Arena on Monday evening for a Discover Central Division showdown versus the Florida Panthers.

Columbus was unable to stop its slide on Saturday night, falling short on the road 5-1 versus the Dallas Stars. Vladislav Gavrikov opened the scoring with his second goal of the season but the Blue Jackets surrendered five unanswered goals to lose their fifth straight game. Joonas Korpisalo allowed four goals in 16 shots before getting pulled. Elvis Merzilikins took over and stopped 15 of 16 shots in the loss.

The Panthers remain in contention for the top spot in a suddenly heated division race. Florida enters in second place in the Discover Central with 61 points and a 28-12-5 overall record through 45 games, leaving the Panthers just one point back of the division-leading Carolina Hurricanes. Meanwhile, Columbus has been trending in the opposite direction as of late. The Blue Jackets have slid down to seventh place in the division standings with 39 points and a 15-22-9 overall record in 46 games.

Florida won for the second time in three games with a 5-3 victory on the road against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night. Frank Vatrano scored the game-winning goal while Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 28 of 31 shots to earn the win. Brandon Montour, Patric Hornqvist, Jonathan Huberdeau, and Anthony Duclair also scored for the Panthers.

Full preview at Winners & Whiners

Monday in the Central (Standings/Panthers Playoff Chances):

  • CAROLINA (29-10-4 62P) at TAMPA BAY (29-13-2 60P) 7 p.m.
  • DETROIT (16-24-6 38P) at DALLAS (17-14-12 46P) 7:30 p.m. NBCSN
  • CHICAGO (21-19-5 47P) at NASHVILLE (24-21-1 49P) 8 p.m.

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