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Booth, Vokoun Back Tonight

Thursday, 02.05.2009 / 12:51 PM / Preview
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Booth, Vokoun Back Tonight
(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
By Dave Joseph for floridapanthers.com

SUNRISE – When the Panthers take the ice tonight at BankAtlantic Center against the red-hot New York Islanders, leading scorer David Booth and goalie Tomas Vokoun will be back in uniform.

The Panthers, 8-2-3 since Jan. 3, have been without Booth the past two games due to the flu while Vokoun missed Tuesday’s game in Toronto also with the bug.

But after Booth and Vokoun participated in Thursday morning’s skate, coach Peter DeBoer announced the two were healthy and both would play this evening.

Booth, who skated for roughly an hour Wednesday when the team arrived back in South Florida from Toronto, said after Thursday’s morning skate; “Maybe my endurance is not where it was, but my speed felt fine.”

DeBoer said Vokoun will start in goal. He also said he’s happy that Booth is ready to return to the lineup.

“We’re a forechecking, puck pressure team and nobody closes on people faster than David Booth,” DeBoer said. “His speed out there is something we miss and he’s a welcome addition back.”

The Panthers enter tonight’s 7:30 p.m., game eighth in the Eastern Conference, just three points behind seventh-place Buffalo and five behind sixth-place Philadelphia.

While the Panthers shutout the Islanders here in October, they’ve dropped their last two games on Long Island, including a 3-1 loss Saturday.

“These two huge points are huge and they’re points you need,” Booth said.

“We played a real good game against them here early in the  year,” DeBoer said. “We can’t dwell on (Saturday).”

Defenseman Bryan McCabe, who scored the dramatic, game-winning goal in Toronto, said; “We just keep climbing (up the standings), keep building, and things are going well.”

DeBoer said he hopes the Panthers can build on the success and the good karma from Tuesday in Toronto.

“It was a great win on a lot of different fronts,” DeBoer said. “Obviously, getting the two points. Obviously, Bryan McCabe scoring. But you can just see when we do things like that our confidence grows.”

NOTES


The Islanders enter tonight’s game on a four-game winning streak and are undefeated in regulation in their last five games. Goalie Yann Danis has been a major reason for the Islanders recent run of success. Danis is 4-0-1 in his last five games with a .957 save percentage and 1.99 goals against…The Islanders did not skate Thursday morning. Their trip through South Florida and Saturday in Tampa is their annual Father/Son Road Trip. Stan Hunter, father of forward Trent, told NewYorkIslanders.com, “We just try not to get in any trouble or embarrass the kids.”
UPCOMING EVENTS

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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
 
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