The Panthers will be in the beautiful city of Pittsburgh tonight, getting ready for tomorrow's game against the Penguins. The team seemed to be in a pretty good mood, Monday's practice very active as the team seemed to get some stuff done.
They really focused on short, crisp passes, and work around the net. This team needs goals any way they can get them. JM liked what he saw in practice and was in a very jovial mood. He was very complimentary to the Pens, a team the Panthers have dominated of late. Florida has won 12 of the past 13 games against Pittsburgh, although the Pens won the last meeting after the Panthers played like a team that had just been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs.
"They have two of the top three young players in the game,'' JM said, referring -- I think! -- to Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. The Pens are fun to watch but have lost two straight.
THE NEWS: Joe Nieuwendyk still hasn't skated since re-tweaking his back last week and won't make the trip to Pitt. JM doesn't know when Nieuwy will return. Juraj Kolnik will also miss the short trip, but he could return Thursday against the Sabres.
--Ed Belfour is the latest player to go down to the flu bug, although he was on the plane. Alex Auld, who missed Sunday because he was sick, will play in net against the Pens.
-- Yes, today's picture is of the Pride of Pittsburgh, Mr. Rogers. He led the Steelers to a couple of Super Bowls I think.