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Dave Strader's Blog

Wednesday, 06.21.2006 / 12:00 AM ET / News
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Dave Strader\'s Blog

Hello Panther Fans!!

What a finish to the Stanley Cup Final! Everything that the NHL could have hoped for came true during the last two months. Here are a few thoughts to wrap up this series:

*The new CBA was designed to make all teams more competitive. The final ended up being a matchup of the smallest Canadian market and the second smallest US market.

*The new rules were designed to speed up the pace of the game and the overall time it takes to complete a game. The NHL was a much better product in the arena and on TV as a result.

*Edmonton was the first 8th seed to advance to the final since the current playoff format was implemented.

*The final featured the first successful penalty shot in history (Chris Pronger- game 1) and the first shorthanded overtime winner in final history (Fernando Pisani- game 5).

*Rod Brind'Amour and Glen Wesley each won their first Cups after careers that spanned well over 1,000 games.

*The Southeast Division is home to the champs for the second consecutive playoff year (Tampa Bay- '04, Carolina- '06)...are the Panthers next?

*Scoring was up over a goal a game throughout the playoffs.

*I ran into many familiar faces during the final series from my old Adirondack Red Wings days in the American Hockey League. I started my hockey broadcasting career with Adirondack and I was there from 1979-1985. Here's a list of people at the Final that I worked with way back when:

- 'Canes GM Jim Rutherford (a solid NHL goalie that spent some time in the AHL with Adirondack)

- 'Canes minor league coach Tom Rowe (a forward who could really shoot the puck, played briefly in Adirondack)

- 'Canes goalie coach Greg Stefan (another solid NHL goalie that I knew more during my early days in Detroit, but he spent some time in Adirondack)

- NBC Play-by-play announcer Mike Emrick (he was never actually with Adirondack, but my first year in the AHL was his last as the voice of the Maine Mariners...he left there in 1980 for the Flyers' job)

- ESPN analyst Barry Melrose (Barry still lives in my hometown of Glens Falls...he was near the end of his playing days when we were together in Adirondack...I left for Detroit before he returned to coach the A-Wings)

- Aaron Ward (like Stefan, I knew him more in Detroit, but he was an A-Wing)

*Speaking of old Adirondack Red Wing associates, congratulations to newly appointed Islanders' GM Neil Smith (a former Adirondack GM) and their new coach Ted Nolan (played in Adirondack from 1979 into the early '80's).

*The travel between Raleigh and Edmonton in this series wasn't easy, but the NHL's charter flights that went non-stop (about 4 1/2 hours each way) made it easier.

Well, it's been a fun ride covering the playoffs for NBC, OLN, NHL Radio and NHL International. I'm looking forward to a relaxing summer that I hope will include some good news with regards to the Panthers' 2006-07 roster. It won't be long before training camp begins and we can start another season of Florida Panthers hockey on FSN Florida.

See you in October!!

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 79 27 39 23 66
J. Jokinen 81 18 42 25 60
A. Barkov 66 28 31 18 59
J. Huberdeau 76 20 39 17 59
V. Trocheck 76 25 28 15 53
R. Smith 82 25 25 19 50
A. Ekblad 78 15 21 18 36
N. Bjugstad 67 15 19 -8 34
B. Campbell 82 6 25 31 31
B. Pirri 52 11 13 -4 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 35 19 6 .922 2.35
A. Montoya 12 7 3 .919 2.18

 
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