Hard to score when your guys are taking the freeway to the penalty box the whole time.
Anyway, things aren't good in Pantherland as I'm sure everyone knows by now. The team has lost six straight, and unless something drastic happens tomorrow, will head back to SoFla riding a seven game streak. This was supposed to be a manageable trip, no? Five games, with only one -- Anaheim -- probably out of reach.
After the team beat San Jose, you would have to figure this team could have come away with points in Nashville (which they did), Atlanta (goodness gracious), Los Angeles (who was in goal for LA?) and Phoenix (hey! it's Olli!).
This team, for lack of a better term, is a mess. You can see it in their faces when they come into the rink. They are a beaten bunch. You can't help but feel bad for their rookie coach, a guy who has to deal with this and try and figure a way out. This team almost has to play perfect hockey for 60 minutes -- and even then they may not win.
So, instead of moping around Southern California on Sunday, they should all go to Disneyland. Check out the rides, have some cotton candy. Relax. Get some sun, take some goofy photos. Make the rookie (Michael Frolik) walk around in a goofy hat. Take more photos of that.
Then come in and see what happens against a Ducks team that was handled on Friday by Dallas and probably isn't going to be in a real good mood.
Of course, none of the guys are going to do this. They're going to walk around the local mall, get some coffee, come to the rink and walk in like they did tonight. With their head down, wondering where all the goals are going to come from. Hoping, praying, to get off to a good start and some how win. That's what it's come down to. They are hoping to win, hoping something goes their way. If you could measure confidence, the Panthers are at minus-3 right now.
I like Pete DeBoer, and he looks more dejected by the day. These losses are starting to wear on him and his staff, the losing atmosphere dragging down this franchise like nothing I've ever seen before. Some have spoken about changing the culture of this team, but that is so easier said than done. What do you do? Trade everyone away? Start over? Maybe. Maybe that's what you do. I don't know.
But right now, this team is digging itself into another major league hole. They are falling so far behind they would be asked to repeat a grade if they were in elementary school.
It's ugly right now. Ugly. And look at the schedule. It only gets harder. This, friends, was supposed to be the 'easier' part of the schedule.
But hey, at least Rochester won a game tonight, Shawn Matthias, Kenndal McArdle and Stefan Meyer all scoring goals the Panthers could have desperately used tonight.
Pete said yesterday that he sees brighter days ahead for this team.
They must seem far, far away.