The Florida Panthers Aren’t Your Average Cats

(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

Aleksander Barkov proves the Florida Panthers are stacked with potential superstars.(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Florida Panthers are the type of team that can really give their fans heartburn.  On its face, the standings demonstrate that the team is just plain lousy.  Second to last place in the conference standings, mediocre scoring, inflated attendance rumors, and barely any legitimacy throughout the hockey world.  Fear not Panther’s fans, you are not completely doomed.

The Florida Panthers Can’t be THAT BAD

Perhaps it would be easy to write them off if they did not have so much potential.  Riddle me this hockey world:  if this team is so horrible, how is it that arguably one of the best teams in the league cannot get past them?  What’s that?  You don’t know who I am talking about?  The Pittsburgh Penguins people.  On January 20, the Cats sent the Penguins marching after a 5-1 massacre to close out the series against the team winning 2 out of 3 games.  Check it out.

As you can see, even Russian hockey mad man Evgeni Malkin was no match for the Cats that night.  But don’t take my word for it, lets let the statistics highlight this paradox.  Brace yourselves, for it is about to get more confusing:

Florida Panthers:  Top 8 players have 180 points in 437 games

Pittsburgh Penguins:  Top 4 players have 215 points in 176 games

Florida Panthers:  The entire team’s +/- rating is -48

Pittsburgh Penguins:  The entire team’s +/- rating is +64

Florida Panthers:  The entire team has 15 total power play goals

Pittsburgh Penguins:  The entire team has 41 power play goals (Chris Kunitz has 11 goals on his own!)

[Keep ScoreBig in mind for your Florida Panthers tickets needs]

The stats could go on for days.  Nonetheless, despite the massive offensive talent manifested in the Pens’ core, they are no match for the Cats.  I digress….

Sid loves Iceburgh and the taste of Tender Vittles!

“Did we just lose to the Florida Panthers..AGAIN!?”

 

Trust me Sid, there are a lot of people who are just as confused as you are.  Life is interesting that way.

 

 

 

But wait there is another great team who can’t beat the Panthers.  Who could it be?  The Detroit Red Wings.  According to NHL.com, as of 1/27/14, the Cats have sent the Red Wings flying in all three matches this season.  Disclaimer:  THW recognizes that in this most recent matchup, Detroit was without Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg, but hey, they are all pros out there right?  Detroit by no means has the firepower the Pens have, but they are still no pushovers.  Let’s have another statistical pow wow shall we?

Florida Panthers:  Top 8 players have 180 points in 437 games

Detroit Red Wings:  Top 8 players have 240 points in 315 games

Florida Panthers:  The team’s +/- rating is -48

Detroit Red Wings:  The team’s +/- rating is -12

Florida Panthers:  The team has 15 total power play goals

Detroit Red Wings:  The team has 30 power play goals.

A few things.  First, the difference statistically between the Wings and the Cats does not shock the conscience the way the Cats/Pens comparison does; however, in looking at Detroit’s numbers, it is obvious who has the better team on paper.

Second, THW recognizes that these stats are not so conclusive as to be fully indicative of a team’s success potential.  The most important takeaway here, is that despite the statistical success Detroit has over the Cats, the Red Wings have star power.  Datsyuk and Zetterberg alone are bigger names per say then anyone on the Panthers.

Remarkably and despite this situation, the team has prevailed against both the Penguins and the Red Wings, with a talented pool of prospects, and less-than-average known veterans.  If there is anything to be said in light of these circumstances, it’s that the Cats’ potential is sky high.

Florida Panthers’ Front Office is Committed

Stay tuned fans.  Though the season may be at times painful to watch for the losses, and perhaps frustrating to watch through the wins, there seems to be sun on the horizon.  New owner Vincent Viola has committed to putting his money wear his mouth is…literally.  Viola has pledged that the Cats will be closer to the salary cap then they have ever been.

“They’ve given me an open [wallet]. I’m pumped up. We can do hockey deals now, what the best deal is as far as hockey is considered.”

Sure, it may be hard to believe.  Particularly since the Cats have never really been close to the salary cap in past years.  However, THW had the privilege of speaking with Panthers’ President Michael Yormark who echoed the same promises.

The team seems to be in good hands at this point, with a potent pool of talented youngsters and a bunch of cash to spend.  Though the future is uncertain one thing can be said for sure: if the Cats can beat the best team now, imagine what they could do with a salary cap team?

For more on the Florida Panthers and Los Angeles Kings, follow me on Twitter @JesseScott_THW

Jesse Weinstein

Jesse Weinstein

Contributor at The Hockey Writers
I am a lifelong hockey enthusiast, U.S. Navy veteran, and future attorney.

3 Comments

  1. Nick, my pleasure. Great to hear from you.

  2. Thank you. As a Panther fan it’s nice to see someone not bashing on your favorite team.

    • Nick Thank you so much. I am hopeful for them. Please follow me for more on the Panthers @JesseScott_THW. Great to hear from you.

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