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D-Day Deals

DdayLooks like a beautiful day to hit the golf course, maybe hang out by the pool, sipping on a Diet Dr. Pepper with an umbrella in it.

All that good stuff is going to have to wait. It's trade deadline time.

The trade deadline is at 3 p.m. Miami time, so we should have a little bit of fun before now and then.

What do you think the Panthers do? What can the Panthers do? My feeling is they make at least one minor move, and as I've said before, I don't think Olli Jokinen is going anywhere -- despite this past weekend's crummy play by the Panthers (they should have lost both those games).

Besides many of the obvious reasons for not trading Olli, here's one I thought of on the flight home. I'm going to call it the "Michael Yormark Effect" (trademarked in three countries and two counties).

The Panthers have 11 home games left this season, nine in the month of March. The Panthers need to sell tickets to these games, and are going to try and get fans to buy into the "March to the Playoffs" etc.

Hard to do that without the Captain, right? Hard to get fans to buy in -- and buy tickets -- when trading the team's leading scorer (for the past four seasons) is shipped out of town.

I know Alan Cohen was very disappointed after Sunday's loss, and I don't know if fans understand how passionate he is about this team. I think that's why he's pulled the trigger so quick in the past. He's being patient right now. Shipping out Olli isn't being patient. Firing the coach isn't being patient.

You can say what you want about the team not making the playoffs since 2000, but it's not because they've stood still. This team has had more changes than Joan Rivers' mug -- and at least the Panthers are a little better for it.

Bert -- What have the Panthers done on the past two deadline days? In 2006, they signed Olli to a four-year deal, and inked Chris Gratton to a two-year contract. Last year, JM spun off Gary Roberts and an injured Todd Bertuzzi. I'm sure a lot of people would love to see the Panthers announcing nothing more than "we've signed Jay Bouwmeester to a six-year contract...."

-- The Lightning have been busy, no? Vinny Prospal goes to Philadelphia, then they sign Dan Boyle to a six-year deal. So far (9:10 a.m.) that's been it, although it looks like Brad "George" Richards is headed to Dallas.

-- Dougie Mac doing Canadian television today....

-- Check back here throughout the day. Miami Herald D-Day Central is mobile and that means on the road. The Miami Herald Road Trip starts later this morning at Incredible Ice in Coral Springs, then moves on the Big Bank in Sunrise where we'll ride out the storm with a bunch of stressed out media folks from Toronto.

When I hear something, it'll be here.

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