Daily Archives: March 10, 2013

Game Day Preview: Montreal Canadiens vs. Florida Panthers. In The Crowd I Feel At Home



GAMEDAY SONG: Out In The Street

The past week of hockey for the Florida Panthers has been a repeat performance of the entire season.  One word that you might use to describe the results is schizophrenic.  After a solid win at home on Tuesday against the Winnipeg Jets, the Cats followed that up with a clunker in Washington on Thursday, and then a spirited effort at home against those same Jets Friday night, only to come up on the short end of the score.  Again.  The Panthers can’t seem to buy a two game winning streak, and probably would miss the handout if they were being given away.  This is how the season has gone.  When things are working and when they’re prepared, the Panthers compete.  Yet when they start slow, such as they did both Thursday and Friday, they either never catch up, or when they do, they run out of gas in late in the game or in overtime.  We’re at the midway point of the season and you would have hoped that by now the Panthers would have found some sort of happy medium.

With injuries mounting, and with the Jekyll and Hyde performance, the Panthers are running out of time and falling further behind the pack.  Making the post season at this point is likely to happen only if the Panthers win the division.  And that is an extremely tall order even now.  Unless they can string some wins together soon, they’ll be on the outside looking in.  Preparation has been an issue as the Cats are continually suffering from sluggish starts to games and falling behind quickly.  Each game at this portion of the season now becomes a must win, and with that being said, we’ll try not to type that in each preview since we already know it to be so.

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Around The NHL: Sunday March 10th, 2013

What better way to spend your Sunday Brunch than by catching up on all of last night’s amazing NHL action that you may have missed! Here are the top stories and videos from the all of yesterday’s action around the NHL.

*Vladimir Sobotka, Sergei Bobrovsky and Tuukka Rask were the three stars from Saturday’s action. Puck Daddy.

* Sidney Crosby and James Neal shoot the Penguins to an ovetime win against the Leafs. TSN.

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NHL Midway Review: Five Disappointing Players

As most teams approach the mid-way point in this 48-game shortened season, it’s time to take a step back and make assessments. Who has been great? Who has surprised you? And yes, who has been a disappointment?

On most teams around the league – sorry Blackhawks’ fans – there is at least one player fans can point to as the guy who just isn’t living up to what they had hoped for. Whether he’s failing to live up to last season’s success, or simply underperforming under the cloud of a large contract, there are many ways to label a player as disappointing.

After taking a quick look around the NHL, I have compiled a short list of players who I think many fans will agree have been huge disappointments this year for their respective teams.

*Stats accurate as of March 6, 2013

Travis Zajac (New Jersey Devils)

Travis Zajac (Wikipedia)

Travis Zajac (Wikipedia)

After an outstanding Stanley Cup playoff run in which he was able to compile 14 points, including an overtime game winning goal against the Florida Panthers to force a game 7 - Travis Zajac was awarded with an 8 year, $46 million contract this past offseason.

Sadly, ever since the ink dried on that mammoth contract, Zajac has yet to live up to the level of play that was expected of him. In 23 games this season, Zajac has only been able to earn 7 points (4G 3A) on a Devils team that is in desperate need of offense.

While Zajac is still a valuable member of the Devils’ penalty killing unit and a fantastic faceoff specialist (55.3% on the season), the fact remains that he will need to greatly improve his scoring numbers if he hopes to live up to both his contract and fan’s expectations.

Stephen Weiss (Florida Panthers)

Even before it was announced that Stephen Weiss would miss the rest of the 2013 season to undergo surgery on his wrist, it’s safe to say that his performance up until that point was hardly what fans had expected.

After scoring an impressive 57 points last season and making his first ever trip to the Stanley Cup playoffs, Weiss and the Panthers’ organization as a whole came into the 2013 season shouldering lofty expectations.

In 17 games this season, Weiss was only able to compile 4 points (1G 3A) while looking lackadaisical during many shifts and simply not putting forth the same effort fans had seen from him in past seasons. Whether it was due to injury or his looming free agency, the fact remains that Weiss didn’t live up to expectations this season.

Sadly, Weiss will continue to disappoint fans not only because he is not on the ice, but also because his injury has now cost the Panthers their best possible trade asset as the April 3rd deadline approaches.

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