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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

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

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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