Florida Panthers Facebook Florida Panthers Twitter Florida Panthers Google+ Florida Panthers Pintrest Florida Panthers Instagram Florida Panthers

The Lowdown: Panthers vs Senators

The Cats and Senators battle in Sunrise at BB&T Center.

Tuesday, 03.25.2014 / 10:00 AM ET / Preview
By "Hockey Pat" McGrath  - FloridaPanthers.com
Share with your Friends

The Lowdown: Panthers vs Senators
The Cats and Senators battle in Sunrise at BB&T Center.

THE LOWDOWN is a gameday preview produced by “Hockey Pat” McGrath, a lifelong Cats fan who previously wrote for the Florida Panthers themed blog “TheRatTrick”. The contents of THE LOWDOWN and all opinions expressed therein are solely those of Hockey Pat and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Florida Panthers or Sunrise Sports & Entertainment LLC. Having said that, if you find yourself laughing or smiling as you read the LOWDOWN, feel free to thank us. We accept thank you notes, tweets and ticket purchases.

Ottawa Senators vs. Florida Panthers

Senators Panthers
Record 29-29-13 26-38-8
Points 71 60
Place 6th in Atlantic 7th in Atlantic

Back in the Sunshine State, the Florida Panthers look to enjoy some home cookin’ when they welcome in the Ottawa Senators. The Sens have been dealing with rapidly plunging approval ratings as the team is currently in the midst of a 2-6-2 tailspin. Ottawa, however, is coming off a 4-3 shootout victory over Tampa Bay last night and the team will be wrapping up their 12th back-to-back of the season tonight in Sunrise. So far, the Senators are 2-7-2 is the second half of back-to-backs this season.

Here is tonight’s lowdown:

Season Series

Tonight will be the fourth and final matchup between these two Atlantic Division rivals. The Sens took the first two games of the series before the Panthers got one on the road in Ottawa, a 4-2 win in mid-December. The Cats fell behind 2-1 in that game but staged a frantic comeback capped off by this game winning rocket from Tom Gilbert:

How about that primal scream from the booth? Goldie was definitely feelin’ it on this one.

Ottawa Players to Watch

#65 Erik Karlsson: Already five seasons into his career, the Sens’ 23-year-old defenseman has matured into a legitimate NHL superstar thanks to his impressive box of offensive tools. With 68 points (20-48-68) in 71 games, Karlsson leads his team as well as all NHL defensemen in scoring. The speedy Swede had three points (1-2-3) last night in Tampa Bay, including this toothsome finish in the first period:

Yeah, he’s pretty good…

#19 Jason Spezza: Taking over captaincy duties from the departed Daniel Alfredsson, the Senators center has continued his steady play. With 59 (19-40-59) points in 66 games, the 30-year-old is second to only Karlsson in team scoring. Spezza is coming off a strong game in Tampa as he recorded a goal in regulation and the game-winning score in the shootout.

Opponents Scope

Speaking of Spezza…

The Senators began the year as a darling NHL playoff dark horse but things have not gone as planned north of the border. Captain Jason Spezza expressed some of his frustrations to the media regarding what the Sens have left on the table.

“We’ve had better teams, for sure, that have had higher expectations,” Spezza said. “But I think we expected to make another step as a group this year and we haven’t, we’ve taken a step backward.”

Failing to meet lofty expectations is one way to draw the ire of your head coach and Ottawa general Paul MacLean expressed his frustrations with the losing in the form of a no-pucks practice on Sunday that was instead heavy on the sprints.

“We’ve lost five in a row or whatever it is, so I have no problems with how (Sunday’s) practice was,” Spezza said. “If you don’t win hockey games, that’s how you get treated.”

March Sadness

Let’s pour one out for Panthers’ broadcaster, and Syracuse alum, Steve Goldstein, who had to endure an early end to the party as his beloved basketball team got bounced from the big dance by the underdogs at Dayton.

Luckily his broadcast team was there to have his back:


This is Ottawa’s mascot:

He is a cat….which has nothing to do with ‘Senators’ as a nickname, and quite frankly he is stepping on the toes of the NHL’s finest Cat-based franchise.

Long live Stanley C. Panther!!!

Enjoy the game. Let’s go Panthers!




1 x - NYR 73 47 19 7 224 168 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 75 46 22 7 244 194 99
4 NYI 75 44 26 5 228 208 93
5 PIT 74 40 23 11 204 186 91
6 DET 73 39 22 12 212 201 90
7 WSH 74 40 24 10 215 182 90
8 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
9 BOS 74 36 25 13 195 193 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 CBJ 74 35 35 4 203 230 74
13 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48


J. Huberdeau 71 13 32 7 45
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
J. Jokinen 73 7 33 -1 40
J. Jagr 69 13 25 -4 38
B. Boyes 72 12 23 10 35
A. Ekblad 73 11 24 10 35
J. Hayes 64 18 13 -4 31
A. Barkov 63 12 17 -2 29
B. Campbell 74 3 21 1 24
B. Pirri 41 20 2 5 22
R. Luongo 26 17 11 .922 2.32
A. Montoya 5 7 2 .888 3.08
FloridaPanthers.com is the official Web site of the Florida Panthers. Florida Panthers and floridapanthers.com are trademarks of the Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.