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5 Things To Watch: Jan. 24 vs Colorado

Whether you're going to the game or if you can't make it and are catching the game on FOX Sports Florida or 560 WQAM, here are the five things to look for in tonight's matchup against the Avalanche.

Friday, 01.24.2014 / 12:30 PM ET / News
By Glenn Odebralski  - FloridaPanthers.com
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5 Things To Watch: Jan. 24 vs Colorado
Whether you\'re going to the game or if you can\'t make it and are catching the game on FOX Sports Florida or 560 WQAM, here are the five things to look for in tonight\'s matchup against the Avalanche.

Whether you're going to the game or if you can't make it and are catching the game on FOX Sports Florida or 560 WQAM, here are the five things to look for in tonight's matchup against Colorado.


AVALANCHE (31-13-5) at PANTHERS (20-23-7)
7:30 PM ET; TV: FOX Sports Network; RADIO: 560 AM
Last 10: Colorado 7-2-1; Florida 5-3-2

SERIES CLOSE OUT: The Panthers and Avs meet for the second time this season and the Cats look to sweep the season series after taking a 4-1 victory in Colorado in early November. This game unfortunately won't see the battle between the top two picks in this last season's draft as Panthers rookie center Aleksander Barkov will miss the game with a lower body injury. Florida fans will see the top rookie scorer in No. 1 pick Nathan MacKinnon and the rest of his teammates at the BB&T Center however. A win would give the Panthers two wins in the season series for the first time in franchise history, even dating back to when the Avs were the Quebec Nordiques.

THREE SPOT: Florida's offensive surge in single period has continued of late. After posting just three goals in a period once in their first 45 games, the offense has struck quickly as they have recorded three three-goal periods in their last five games including in back-to-back periods against the Penguins (third) and Sabres (first).

HOT STREAKS: Rookie forwards Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad are picking up the offense as the Panthers young guns sit on three-game point streaks. Huberdeau has posted four points (1-3-4) over that span while slick Nick has posted three (1-2-3), including his team leading third game-winning goal in the second period against Buffalo. Forward Jesse Winchester has also been great since coming back from injury, posting four points (1-3-4) in the back-to-back wins over the Penguins and Sabres.

SINCE DECEMBER: Florida has been one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference since the calendar hit December. After opening the month with a loss against Winnipeg, the Cats have gone on to a 13-7-2 record, earning 28 points along the way.

FOLLOW THE LEADER: It's been great to see captain Ed Jovanovski back on the ice and JovoCop has been producing since returning from injury nine games ago. Jovo has already had two two-point nights, including a goal and an assist in his 1,100th career NHL game in Buffalo on Tuesday. The captain sits just one point shy of 500 for his NHL career.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 76 47 21 8 200 169 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 TBL 76 46 23 7 244 198 99
4 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
5 PIT 75 41 23 11 207 188 93
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 75 37 25 13 199 195 87
9 OTT 74 37 25 12 216 199 86
10 FLA 75 34 26 15 186 205 83
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 75 31 32 12 167 192 74
14 CAR 74 28 36 10 173 202 66
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 75 20 47 8 144 254 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 72 13 34 8 47
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
J. Jokinen 74 7 33 -1 40
J. Jagr 70 13 26 -3 39
B. Boyes 73 12 23 10 35
A. Ekblad 74 11 24 11 35
J. Hayes 65 18 13 -5 31
A. Barkov 64 14 17 -2 31
B. Campbell 75 3 21 2 24
B. Pirri 42 20 2 5 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 26 17 12 .921 2.33
A. Montoya 5 7 2 .888 3.08
 
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