With new ownership that’s apparently given general manager Dale Tallon permission to spend to the salary cap, the Florida Panthers are definitely a team to watch leading up to tomorrow’s trade deadline, and into this summer’s draft and free agency.
Yesterday, we passed along the news that longtime club president Michael Yormark had resigned to go work with Jay-Z’s agency. Yormark was replaced with Rory Babich, who spoke optimistically about the future of the franchise.
“We’re incredibly optimistic,” Babich said, per the Miami Herald. “[Vinnie Viola and Doug Cifu] bought the team with the belief it can be very successful in South Florida. Dale and I certainly share that vision. That’s why we’re both here today.”
The Panthers already have some blue-chip youngsters, like Jonathan Huberdeau, Aleksander Barkov, Nick Bjugstad, Drew Shore, Erik Gudbranson, Dmitry Kulikov, and Michael Matheson. Even if they don’t all pan out perfectly, with some savvy trade and/or free-agent additions, the Panthers’ future could be a bright one on the ice.
As for off the ice, we’ll have to wait and see. If the Panthers turn into a consistent winner, will the fans support them?
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger