With three wins in their last four — including victories over Anaheim, Colorado, and Vancouver — the Florida Panthers are starting to enjoy some success under new head coach Peter Horachek.
“He demands that everyone is accountable and to put forth hard work on short shifts and play the game the right way,” said Panthers winger Scottie Upshall, per the Sun Sentinel.
“If you studied our game last year, it’s been an east-west attack in which we try to do things ourselves. This is a very straightforward game. That system and attitude is there to get the best out of the group. We don’t have a guy who’s going to get 110 points, but we do have guys with a lot of upside who will be better professionals with a coach like Peter.”
Horacek took over as head coach when Kevin Dineen was fired on Nov. 8. At the time, the Panthers were 3-9-4. They’re 3-3-0 since, with all three losses coming by a single goal on the road.
On Tuesday, Florida went into Vancouver and had the favored Canucks hanging on, trying to get at least a point, when the game was tied in the third period. The Panthers ultimately won, 3-2, in a shootout; they ended up out-shooting Vancouver, 36-29.
Florida remains well back of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, but with winnable games tonight in Edmonton and tomorrow in Calgary, the Panthers could be returning home feeling a lot better about themselves.