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A Familiar Foe

Wednesday, 11.26.2008 / 12:36 PM / Preview
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A Familiar Foe
The Panthers and Devils battle for the second time in less than a week. New Jersey earned a 3-1 victory over Florida last Thursday. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
The Panthers reaped the benefits of a good start Monday night when beating the Hurricanes 3-2. They hope to repeat that effort throughout 60 minutes this evening when they play host to the Devils at BankAtlantic Center.

The Panthers (8-11-1) will meet a Devils team this evening that has won four consecutive games – including a 3-1 victory over the Panthers last week – and are coming off a 7-3 victory Sunday in Tampa Bay.

The Devils (11-7-2, 4-3-1 on the road) were led Sunday by a four-goal performance from Dainius Zubrus. Zach Parise has 13 goals for the Devils and Patrick Elias eight goals and 12 assists. Goalie Scott Clemmensen is riding a three-game winning streak.

“Our game seems to (revolve) around our starts,” said Panther coach Peter DeBoer after Wednesday’s morning skate at the BankAtlantic Center. “If we can dictate the play and forecheck like we did against Carolina - come out and be ready to go and attack early in a game – we seem to have more success. I thought (last week) in New Jersey we waited to see what they were going to do.”

DeBoer stressed the importance of playing a complete game tonight against the Devils.

“Our team’s got to be prepared for 60 minutes,” he added. “(The Devils) hit, they battle. It’s a pretty simple game plan. Get the pucks up along the boards and into the corners and win your battles and get to the net. So we have to show up tonight with a battle mentality that we’re going to get to those dirty areas.

“I think this game comes down to which team is more desperate, which one wants it more. You’ve got two teams who know a lot about each other. I think we play similar styles, we’ve both been hit by some injuries and I think it will come down to the goaltender, who executes and who’s the more desperate group.”

The Panthers will be without Richard Zednik, who injured his left arm in Monday’s victory. Zednik will be out for “weeks, not days,” according to DeBoer.

“I thought he was starting to play the best hockey he’s played,” DeBoer said. “He seemed to have some chemistry with (Michael) Frolik.”

The Panthers did not call up anyone from their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate in Rochester in wake of Zednik’s injury. The Panthers have 12 forwards on the roster.

The Panthers will have only one healthy scratch tonight, and that will come from the blue line. Depending on whether Nick Boynton (concussion) dresses, the healthy scratch will be a game-time decision.

NOTES

Defenseman Bryan McCabe enters tonight’s game with eight points (3-5-8) and a plus-4 rating in his last nine games. Left winger Ville Peltonen has a two-game goal scoring streak… Peltonen and David Booth have scored four of the Panthers last five goals… DeBoer added the Panthers will need more from depth players like Peltonen if they’re to be competitive. “Games will be decided whether we get contributions from our depth players up front or our defense,” he said. “Like last game, Peltonen got one, Campbell… tonight it has to be someone else. We’ve got to get three goals at least out of them or you’re not going to have much of an opportunity to win.”… On this day in hockey history (1917)…the National Hockey League was founded...

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 51 32 15 4 166 133 68
2 MTL 49 32 14 3 130 111 67
3 DET 50 29 12 9 149 129 67
4 NYI 49 32 16 1 158 139 65
5 PIT 49 28 13 8 145 125 64
6 BOS 50 27 16 7 134 124 61
7 NYR 47 28 15 4 139 112 60
8 WSH 50 25 15 10 147 129 60
9 FLA 47 21 16 10 115 132 52
10 PHI 51 22 22 7 140 151 51
11 OTT 48 20 19 9 136 136 49
12 TOR 51 22 25 4 144 156 48
13 NJD 50 19 22 9 113 138 47
14 CBJ 48 21 24 3 120 151 45
15 CAR 49 17 26 6 105 129 40
16 BUF 50 14 33 3 94 179 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
N. Bjugstad 47 16 13 -2 29
A. Ekblad 47 7 21 6 28
J. Huberdeau 44 9 17 0 26
J. Jokinen 46 4 21 -3 25
B. Boyes 45 10 12 2 22
J. Hayes 38 13 7 1 20
S. Bergenheim 36 8 9 2 17
A. Barkov 36 5 10 -6 15
B. Campbell 47 3 12 0 15
D. Kulikov 42 1 13 -4 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 18 12 8 .920 2.41
A. Montoya 3 4 2 .891 2.96
 
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