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Panthers: Post Morning Skate

Friday, 10.10.2008 / 1:19 PM ET / Preview
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Panthers: Post Morning Skate
By Dave Joseph for floridapanthers.com

RALEIGH – The Panthers sailed through their morning skate Friday at the RBC Center in preparation for tonight’s opening-season game against the Hurricanes.

Coach Peter DeBoer said everyone on the trip skated, was healthy, and ready to start the 2008-09 this weekend with tonight’s game in Carolina and Saturday night’s home opener at the BankAtlantic Center.

DeBoer said the healthy scratches for tonight’s game will be Anthony Stewart and Michael Frolik up front and Noah Welch on the blue line. With Welch a healthy scratch, Cory Murphy, who cleared waivers earlier in the week, will be starting.

“I talked to (Murphy),” DeBoer said. “There’s a lot of guys who go through waivers and come back and have great seasons. I think it was important to get him in. He deserves to play tonight. I don’t think (putting him on waivers) was anything against his training camp. It’s part of the business.”

Overall, DeBoer said he’s happy with his blue line and will stick with Jay Bouwmeester starting with Bryan Allen, Keith Ballard and Nick Boynton and Murphy and Bryan McCabe.

DeBoer said All-Star goalie Tomas Vokoun will start both games Friday and Saturday.

“He’s played a lot of games,” DeBoer said of Vokoun. “This isn’t going to be anything new for him. We all know what (backup) Craig (Anderson) is capable of doing and we’re going to definitely utilize him as the schedule gets a little busier.”

The Panthers’ first-year head coach also addressed the decision making behind keeping Frolik and sending Shawn Matthias to the Panthers’ American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate in Rochester, N.Y.

“(Matthias) had a real good training camp,” he said. “Obviously, the 23 number up here plays a role. You have to get down to that roster (number) before the season starts. I told (Matthias) in our exit meeting I thought he did everything he could in training camp to make the team. But he has to go down, and when we call him, when we get an injury, he has to make sure the reports are that he is a dominate player and doesn’t belong in the American League but the NHL. He has a bright future. I’m impressed with him.”

“Really, it was a pick ‘em situation. I could have flipped a coin. I think (Matthias and Frolik) both handled themselves exceptionally well. I think we had a few more questionable injuries on the wing than center and I think Frolik can fill out the wing a little easier than Shawn can.”

DeBoer said he doesn’t mind opening the season with games on consecutive nights.

“My history, my experience, with opening nights is you don’t know what to expect,” he said. “You get some nervous energy. I think (assistant coach) Jimmy Hulton said it best on the ice: ‘We could be Calgary or we could be Vancouver tonight.’ I think it was 6-0 last night for Vancouver.

“So it will be good to jump right back into another game tomorrow night, get the first one past everybody.”

SCHEDULE

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AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - NYR 73 47 19 7 224 168 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 75 46 22 7 244 194 99
4 NYI 75 44 26 5 228 208 93
5 PIT 74 40 23 11 204 186 91
6 DET 73 39 22 12 212 201 90
7 WSH 74 40 24 10 215 182 90
8 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
9 BOS 74 36 25 13 195 193 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
13 CBJ 73 34 35 4 198 228 72
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 71 13 32 7 45
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
J. Jokinen 73 7 33 -1 40
J. Jagr 69 13 25 -4 38
B. Boyes 72 12 23 10 35
A. Ekblad 73 11 24 10 35
J. Hayes 64 18 13 -4 31
A. Barkov 63 12 17 -2 29
B. Campbell 74 3 21 1 24
B. Pirri 41 20 2 5 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 26 17 11 .922 2.32
A. Montoya 5 7 2 .888 3.08
 
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