A fresh new season of South Florida hockey, Jacques Martin-style, approaches! In this series, TLB will be posting links to the best, worst, and indifferent previews of our favorite felines: the 2008-09 Florida Panthers.
I'm not gonna dwell for long on this one from Greg Caggiano at the Bleacher report. He covers the entire Eastern Conference, ranks the clubs by projected finish, then serves up short profiles on each. Behold:
"If there is another team in the East that didn't make major changes, it was the Florida Panthers. They will sorely miss Olli Jokinen, but can look forward to the likes of Nathan Horton, Stephen Weiss, and new addition Cory Stillman."
Let's recap no "major changes": GM/Coach became GM. Traded long-time captain. Signed scorer Stillman. Acquired Boynton, Ballard, and McCabe. The defense is completely revamped. New coach hired. New AHL coach hired. New assistant coach hired. Released Stumpel, Monty, and (thankfully) Mezei. Roster spots wide open for new blood Matthias/Repik/Frolik/Ellerby.
Yeah, sure...the club really will look no different than last season. Umkaaaay.
Oh, and the Cats are projected to finish in TWO spots. Really.