The Florida Panthers have just one win in five games and the NHL’s worst goal differential (minus-11), most of which can be chalked up to Saturday’s 7-1 drubbing — at home — to the Philadelphia Flyers.
It was the Flyers loss that sent coach Kevin Dineen over the edge.
Dineen promised a rough next couple of days for his charges in speaking with the Florida Sun-Sentinel, suggesting bag skates would be in their near futures.
“It’s going to be a miserable couple of days for us,” Dineen explained. “You come off an embarrassing game at home, you don’t like that in front of your fans, so there it is, it’s on our scorecard, so you got to deal with it.
“We didn’t push hard enough from the opening draw which we talked about. We’re not earning our goals. That’s not the success we’ve had and it’s not the way we’re going to play.”
In Florida’s defense, the team is decimated by injury right now. Forwards Stephen Weiss, Kris Versteeg, Marcel Goc and Sean Bergenheim are all out of the lineup, as is defenseman Erik Gudbranson.
But that’s hardly comforting — or an excuse — for Dineen.
“Injuries have absolutely nothing to do with what happened,” he said. “We got our tails handed to us in every way.
“Our defense was atrocious [vs. Philly.] We’re a bunch of individuals right now. We don’t have the chemistry to play as a team. I hate sitting in these things and beating up on your people, it’s just stupid.”
If there is good news for Florida, it’s that Versteeg (groin) appears primed to make his season debut on Tuesday when the Panthers play in Tampa Bay.
Versteeg finished third on the team in scoring last year, with 54 points, and finished second on the team in goals and PPG.