Thursday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Open Forum (Ovie Lurking)

The Cats get a second day off from game action to prepare for The Great 8 and the rest of the Washington Capitals.

The good news is the Florida Panthers have won three of their last four. The bad news is they will be welcoming the league's top goal-scorer when Alexander Ovechkin and old Southeast Divsion-mates, the Washington Capitals come calling tomorrow night.

Ovechkin's 26 goals top the NHL, by five over Corey Perry and Alexander Steen, and he is fresh off a four-goal performance against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The fiery Russian's scoring exploits have given him an outside chance of bagging 50 goals in 50 games. Although missing two games earlier this season, one of which was against the Cats, means he is really going to have to notch 50 in 48 to make it stick.

The Panthers have been showing improvement as of late and are 4-5-1 in their last ten games. They will need another strong performance from Tim Thomas to help topple the Caps and climb back to .500 at home. Getting better results at the BB&T Center is paramount if the Cats want to stay on the periphery of the playoff chase or maybe, just maybe, close the gap on Toronto, who currently holds down the final wildcard spot in the Eastern Conference. Last night, the Los Angeles Kings pinned a nice 3-1 loss on the Maple Leafs to give the Panthers a bit of a helping hand.

Tonight is a busy night around the NHL, and all Atlantic Division teams (with the exception of ours) are in action. As always your comments are most welcome below, after all, it is a caterwaul...