Thursday, September 29, 2016


Oops, did I post this too soon?

Team Europe surprised a lot of people by getting this far but there's just no way they beat Canada tonight. They have played well and can be proud of what they accomplished but Team Canada is so well stocked with talent I can't see any team let alone Team Europe beat them.

I guess I'll tune in for the coronation.

Pre-season games are already going on. Kyle, a salesperson for the Panthers called yesterday trying to get me to buy a season package. I can't finance it just yet. I may show up for the Open House this Saturday at the BB&T Center at 1pm but I'd also like to get in a round of golf. I'm not sure what to do but it is nice to know that the NHL season is just around the bend and we've all survived the summer. It was fun to have the World Cup to get your puck fix but Cat fans had 12 players in the tourney and that's a lot of possible injuries. Let's hope Ekblad's pain in the neck is healed.

My one Panther thought for the day is in the crease. I was surprised that the Cats signed a big time keeper this summer as I didn't know that Louie had the hip injury all last season but played through it. Not knowing if he'd heal in time, grabbing James Reimer was a solid move. With Luongo declaring himself healthy and ready it puts the Cats in a good situation. They have two solid keepers and won't have to overwork either of them. I don't know anything about this Reto Berra guy just yet but let the Yogi jokes commence!

In the past, Louie handled most of the load. Last season he had more than two thirds of the workload. He's only 37 but it seems like he's 45. I remember the Islanders drafting him and seeing him on the ice when I was playing. I don't think he and I practiced together but I did attend a meeting of keepers that he was at. My point here is he's not a kid anymore and has had enough injuries that a reduced workload could benefit Louie and the Cats in a deeper playoff run than last year. That assumes he keeps the number one spot. Reimer will want to play as many games as possible and push Louie for that #1 spot. My gut tells me this bodes well for the Cats. No disrespect to former NY Ranger Al Montoya but Panther fans were not demanding he get more than the 22 starts he got. I'll be watching how this unfolds. I know I'd want to play and I also want to be thought of as the number one guy. The Panthers haven't had this type of situation though Luongo of course dealt with this in Vancouver. True, it's possible that it could go bad but again my instinct tells me this will be a real positive situation and a benefit for our Florida Panthers.

We will find out soon enough!

----}- Bird
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