Do good things come in threes? I don’t know. I do know that there are a lot of three-word phrases that I like and dislike when it comes to the Panthers.
Let’s start with this week: “All Star Game,” a.k.a. “Panthers get snubbed.” Are you serious?! (this is fun). Along with the Sabres, Coyotes and Islanders, the Panthers will not be represented in the game. Evgeny Dadonov is the lone Panther selected to participate in the 2011 NHL All-Star Weekend. The 21 year old from Russia will compete in the SuperSkills competition along with 11 other rookies.
Some more three word phrases that I have thoughts on:
“Panthers Power Play!” Most fans cheer the two-minute opportunity. That is, unless it’s the Cats. The Panthers have the worst power play in the NHL, with a dreadful 11.4 percent conversion rate. Need I say more?
“Tomas Vokoun, Save!” Let’s face it, when a team is not living up to expectations, fans want a change and they want it now! If you have followed any live game threads, you’ve seen the Vokoun critics after every goal. “Fire/trade/get rid of Vokouon.” Just as the pitcher gets credit for the win in baseball, the goalie would seem like the obvious place to start pointing fingers. However, Vokoun has the 10th-best save percentage in the NHL. He is 11th in total saves. This guy faces a lot of shots with a defense that doesn’t show up consistently. And he is tied for second in shutouts. After Tuesday’s game against the Rangers, Coach DeBoer said “our goalie won us this game … our goalie was our best player and it was enough.”
“Another blown lead.” Since Dec. 31, the Panthers have taken a two-goal lead in eight games, going on to lose seven of those. The Panthers seem to start off strong but struggle to put teams away. In Tuesday’s game, the Panthers took only one shot in the third period. Fortunately, it was the game-winning shot. Speaking of things that come in threes, that seems to be the magic number for consecutive wins. The Panthers have put together three wins in a row three times this season, each time just missing that fourth game. The last time they won four in a row was in March 2008.
So, what three words would I like most? Panthers beat Bruins (tonight)? Stanley Cup Playoffs? Stanley Cup Champions?! Now I’m dreaming. OK, “Panthers beat Bruins!”