Home Talk 2 Us Instagram
The Panthers 2011-12 season is quickly approaching and with that, floridapanthers.com is going 15 in 15 by taking a look at the top five questions, players to watch and games of the season on a countdown to the home opener on October 15th against Tampa Bay. We'll unveil one of the top five on a rotating basis each day to help fans get ready for what hopes to be an exciting season.

PURCHASE TICKETS TO THE HOME OPENER

Countdown 1: No. 1 Question; How Long For The Team To Gel?

Friday, 10.14.2011 / 4:05 PM
By Jared Levine - FloridaPanthers.com / Countdown To Home Opener 2011

Defenseman Brian Campbell (left) and forward Kris Versteeg (right) are one of the new players brought in over the summer to go with holdover forward Stephen Weiss (center).
In today’s topic, we take a closer look at how long it will take for the Florida Panthers to play as a team after acquiring 12 new players (either via free agency, draft or trade) in the Top Five Questions of the season.

When acquiring a new player, it usually takes some time for the individual to get adapted to a new coaching philosophy and playing style of other players.  Now imagine the task that head coach Kevin Dineen has after an offseason that brought in 12 new players (including defenseman Erik Gudbranson who as the Panthers top pick in the 2010 NHL Draft, made the opening night roster).

Dineen, in his first year, gets to be the interior decorator of this new look Florida Panther team.  His early season assignment is to get all the new pieces to fit, and to fit early.  He recognizes that it will be a challenge, but he’s been in this position plenty of times before.

"In my six years there, there's probably about 70 percent change in your lineup year to year," said Dineen about coaching in the AHL for the Portland Pirates where turnover is the norm. "That's just the nature of the game. There's players coming up from junior, first-year pros, there's guys who have played in the NHL that are trying to re-establish themselves at that level. So I think you get used to that in the American league. You have to get everybody on the same page, and that's what's really exciting for me, to have that nice window of time to spend some time together as a group before we start the regular season."

The Panthers had six preseason games and training camp to get prepared for the regular season.  If you look at their record (1-4-1) on paper, you will see they didn’t have much success.  However, just getting these players experience playing with each other is good enough.  Players like Tomas Fleischmann and Kris Versteeg made an immediate impact on the team, Fleischmann recorded a goal with two assists and Versteeg had a goal with one assist for the preseason.

There was plenty of positivity coming out of this offseason, but there was still one major question to be answered, who was going to be their goalie?  With Scott Clemmenson out with a knee injury, it was Jose Theodore’s job to lose, and that he almost did.  Theodore would go on to have an offseason he would like to forget, but coach Kevin Dineen still had faith in his old netminder plugging him in as the starter for opening day.

The Panthers would start the season off right, in their first regular season game, the Panthers would go on to beat the New York Islanders 2-0.  Their success on this night was due to two newly acquired players, Brian Campbell and Jose Theodore. Campbell would play 30 minutes of ice time while logging two assists and Theodore would go on to have a shutout, saving 27 shots.

Even though the Panthers would lose their next game 4-2 to the Penguins, they are still 1-1 for the season.  The Panthers seem to be ahead of schedule on the learning curve, by getting a win in their first game of the season.  It will be interesting to see how this team progresses over the season.  As of right now, Dineen and the new look Panthers have some work to do, but they’re not too far off.

UPCOMING EVENTS

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
N. Bjugstad 76 16 22 -14 38
S. Upshall 76 15 22 1 37
B. Campbell 82 7 30 -6 37
B. Boyes 78 21 15 -6 36
S. Bergenheim 62 16 13 -16 29
J. Huberdeau 69 9 19 -5 28
T. Fleischmann 80 8 20 -18 28
T. Gilbert 73 3 25 -5 28
B. Pirri 49 13 12 6 25
A. Barkov 54 8 16 -3 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 25 23 7 .919 2.40
S. Clemmensen 6 7 1 .896 3.09
OUR PARTNERS

 

FloridaPanthers.com is the official Web site of the Florida Panthers. Florida Panthers and floridapanthers.com are trademarks of the Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2014 Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.