Peeke's Points: Off-Season, Part I
Friday, 05.30.2008 / 6:11 PM ET / Blogs
|Panthers Blogger Cliff Peeke|
A Michigan native who’s played hockey (admittedly average at best) most of his life, Cliff grew up watching Red Wings games at the old Olympia Stadium. His allegiance changed to the Panthers the moment it was announced South Florida would have a team.
Cliff has played in adult leagues at IncredibleIce and his oldest son (age 25) plays there as well. His youngest son (age 9) is a member of the Jr. Panthers ’98 Squirt Travel Team.
Peeke's Points Archive
05.30.2008 :::: Off-Season, Part I
Sorry. It’s been awhile since the end of the season (the Alan Cohen meeting) that I last wrote one of these. Personally, I find it very difficult this time of the year as I have to watch sixteen other teams navigate their way to where we are now… two teams… Penguins and Wings in the finals. Another year angry that our Panthers could not extend their season, and another year of high expectations for the new season to begin. When the Panthers fail to make the playoffs (which are a commonplace occurrence) I select teams that carry no ex-Panthers. This year, it was Montreal and San Jose. Unfortunately, both exited too early.
Next season… rest assured that before it starts I’ll be writing the same theme as I did prior to last season… GET OFF TO A STRONG START.
I’m also a Marlins fan. Look at the great start to the season they’ve experienced so far. Just playing .500 the remainder of the season will keep them in the race. But it also allows for eventual losing streaks. Singing to the choir… I know… but whoever coaches this team in the fall better make that priority number one… a great start!!!
Am I the only one… or are there others out there that were very, very concerned that Frolik’s signing came down to the wire? If we had lost him by allowing him to re-enter the entry draft… I would have gone berserk. Thanks for getting it done. I hope he and Matthias (and there are others) are given every opportunity of making the team in the fall.
I’m on record as having supported the move of Martin as GM. And being patient in signing a coach is not a bad thing. But what about the patience in signing our RFA Bouwmeester? Let’s get this done soon.
On defensemen… I’ve heard Martin would like one that’s a solid puck-moving player. Campbell’s available but there have been rumors that Chicago is willing to dangle a ton of money his way. I’ve looked over the lists of upcoming free agents, and there are a few out there who meet the description and may make sense. Still, I am hoping we don’t say goodbye to Magnus Johannson just yet. A Panther I know said Magnus’ passes are very accurate and moves the puck very well out of the zone. A one-year deal maybe? Ellerby is a year or so away… and it’s getting crowded on the back-line. It will be interesting to see a healthy Welch and Van Ryn back there as well. And Cullimore was solid. Some tough decisions back there.
And we still need an elite playmaking forward that can stickhandle in tight spaces. Hey, guess what, Huselius is available.
It’s hard to get excited about this year’s entry draft as we are minus a first round pick (Vokoun). Maybe a trade may land us one?
Anyway, now that Frolik’s inked, I can rest better. Some good stuff on the horizon…new coach, entry draft, and hopefully some success in the free agent market. Come to think of it… there’s still excitement in Pantherland.
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