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Pitchers, Catchers and Cats ... Sunday: Washington Capitals @ Florida Panthers ... No Lineup Changes

Miamistadium Well, spring is officially in the air as the big leaguers are starting to report for spring training around Florida and Arizona.

Not so many teams for us Grapefruit Leaguers as there were in the past, what with Los Angeles, Cleveland and Cincinnati heading off to new digs in Arizona.

At least we still have the Orioles. For now, anyway.

-- Not a lot of activity at Pantherland today, the team going though a fairly short workout at Incredible Ice.

Miami-stadium Pete DeBoer says he's not changing the lineup for tomorrow's game against the Capitals. Washington has a strange turnaround, playing a 7:30 game in Tampa tonight and then coming down here for an early evening game against the Panthers.

-- Also spoke to Jacques Martin about what's going on with the trading deadline bearing down on us. He says talks are ongoing with Jay Bouwmeester, and that he is talking with teams to see what they have to offer.

He says he won't make a move just to add a player, not with the team playing so well. ''If I can imprrove the team, I will,'' he said. He also aluded to Jay not neccisarily wanting to stay in Florida, saying there are plenty of players who do want to play for the Panthers. He used Cory Stillman signing here as a free agent and Bryan McCabe waiving his no-trade to come south.

-- Here are your NHL standings for Saturday, and the games you -- as a Panther fan -- might want to pay attention to today. Enjoy your day.

Saturday's games:

Islanders @ Philadelphia, 1: Panthers are rooting for the Isles; Florida is one point behind the Flyers for sixth

Edmonton @ LA, 4: No interest, although this should be a fun game

Columbus @ Carolina, 7: Panthers are five points ahead of Hurricanes; they are rooting for Blue Jax

Pittsburgh @ Toronto, 7 (HNIC, NHL Network): Again, five points ahead of Leafs; Cats say Go Leafs

Washington @ Tampa, 7:30: Panthers are nine points back of Caps and probably not going to catch them. So whatever.

Boston @ Nashville, 8:  No bearing on Panthers

Ottawa @ Minnesota, 8: Ditto

Dallas @ Chicago, 8:30: X3

Calgary @ Phoenix, 10 (HNIC, NHL Network): Should be a fun game as the Keenans play the Jokinens

1 NE 56 39 10 7 85 190 127 19-4-4 20-6-3 6-2-2 Lost 3
2 ATL 56 36 17 3 75 173 136 18-10-1 18-7-2 8-2-0 Won 3
3 SE 55 34 16 5 73 182 160 22-4-1 12-12-4 6-2-2 Lost 1
4 NE 56 30 20 6 66 170 168 17-6-4 13-14-2 3-7-0 Won 1
5 ATL 56 30 20 6 66 141 155 17-8-3 13-12-3 3-5-2 Lost 1
6 ATL 53 28 16 9 65 169 158 15-7-3 13-9-6 5-5-0 Lost 1
7 SE 55 28 19 8 64 158 151 15-6-5 13-13-3 7-3-0 Won 3
8 NE 56 29 21 6 64 168 156 16-10-2 13-11-4 5-4-1 Won 1

9 SE 55 27 23 5 59 142 161 14-11-1 13-12-4 6-4-0 Lost 1
10 ATL 56 27 24 5 59 169 169 15-12-2 12-12-3 5-4-1 Won 1
11 NE 55 20 25 10 50 165 204 9-10-6 11-15-4 3-4-3 Lost 2
12 SE 55 19 25 11 49 141 171 10-10-7 9-15-4 5-4-1 Won 1
13 NE 53 20 25 8 48 130 152 12-9-5 8-16-3 5-4-1 Won 3
14 SE 56 19 32 5 43 157 194 9-17-2 10-15-3 3-7-0 Lost 1
15 ATL 54 16 32 6 38 133 182 10-12-4 6-20-2 4-4-2 Lost 4


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hope Bo stays but if he does not sign we need to get assets for him, need to look at the big picture which should be to win the stanley cup and be similar to Detroit that has a chance to win it every year.

This team would need too many breaks going its way to win the cup this year. We need help at center and a sniper we have a lot of depth at defense.

There are some desperate teams out there and if we can get a bidding war on Bo then we should and not make the mistake of Atlanta and do everything to make the playoffs and then the next year go back to being near the bottom.

If the season ended today we would play NJ who we played the last time we made the playoffs and we exited quickly, this is a team we do not match up well against and Martin needs to consider this as well.

Last night the excitement was back in the building and we need to build on this and not have a one year wonder


I strongly disagree.This team needs to make the playoffs now, and I would keep it intact even if we lose jaybo for nothing. And i think you overstate what Jaybo is worth as a rent a player.
We also disagree as how far we can go...last time i looked Edmonton was the 8th place team the year before, beat the number one round one, and then went to finals. Hockey more then any sport a goaltender can carry a team.

GR..can we have conference standings daily?


Thanks for the update. In the past, Martin seems to either say nothing or to tell it straight up. Two weeks prior to the TDL, it speaks volumes that Martin is indicating to you that J-Bo does not wish to re-sign here. If anyone should know for sure, that person is Martin, the GM.

I had hoped Bouw would have a change of heart but looks like he is gone.As soon as we make playoffs trade him and build for next year.DeBoer and Martin have done an excekllent job with this team/organization.


I wasn't sure how to read your comment. Was JM stating that there are several people who like S. Fla and there is a chance that Bo might be one of them, or was he implying that Bo has no interest in staying but there are others who want to be here?

I tend to agree with firethegm. Make the playoffs with Bou because some might "overstate" what you can get for him if it isn't a killer deal I keep him and trade his rights on draft day. To trade Bou it would have to a whopper of a package coming back and some teams might do it but if not he helps now. It seems like a win win situation. The team is winning, keep him and make a run in the playoffs. Panthers have beaten Flyers, Habs, Rangers, the teams ahead can be beaten. Get in the playoffs and anything can happen ask Lightning, Hurricanes, Ducks and Oilers when those teams went to finals earlier in the respective seasons they weren't expected to go anywhere.

vic.... No one is going to put up with the build for next year.. I watched bure go, olzanish go, etc. ... The org. Can't bleed anymore...

I am not happy that Bouwmeester is still not buying and and wanting to stay, but I was quite pleased the JM has more or less given the indications that 1) Bo has not really given him any indication he wants to stay, which means that JM is not going to just hold out hope anymore. And 2) That if Bo doesnt want to stay he will at least listen to offers.

In the end I would say see what is out there, and if there is one heck of a deal (For example as scorer, prospect and pick) make the deal, but if there isnt a steal of a deal available, dont make the trade. Atlanta did really well last year with the Hossa trade, and we can too. One player doesnt make a team and the guys that are with the Panthers want to be there and be a team and are doing excellent.

Plus, the Jokinen trade wasnt as bad as alot make it out to be. Frolik is only 9 points behund Olli in points, so there was not alot lost in points, and the defencemen Ballard and Boynton are perfect matches for Petes system and this team.

atlanta deal was awful . a pick, prospect who is now hurt and 2 average players. panthers have pleanty of 3rd and 4th liners. if you get a good center and top 4 dman you do it. otherwise no way! we haven't been to the playoffs since 2000. imagine the fans response if he's traded and they don't get in? those picks and prospects will be meaningless. and haven't we been hearing about our picks and prospects for years???

thanks for posting the conference standings; they are more relevant for us than the division standings.

Ek just quoted you on his website GR. Now he's saying that a good deal is on the table but JM is waiting on better offers if there are ne.

I say we keep him just because its bouwmeester and there is no one like this guy and no one that has a brighter future at D than him. For the future though, we need to get Offensive weapons. With Robak and Ellerby in the system, we can afford to trade Bouwmeester (This is if we are getting some young RAW talent)

I have confidence in JM

Jokinen trade W
McCabe Trade W
DEBOER !!!!!! WIN!
Allen/Horton/Weiss/Ballard - Contracts WIN!
Zed/McLean/Dvorak/Peltonen - Win/Loss situation
Olesz - Contract Lose!
Vokoun trade Win
Matthias W
Drafting Frolik W

He's been A ok in my book!
Kilger trade Lose!

When is Bryan Allen due back? Would he be ready for playoffs or is he out til next year? That would have some relevance on whether to trade Bouwmeester.

I'm starting to have reservations about Bouwmeester. I had originally thought that they should keep him 100% and let him do what he wants later. I think I'll change my mind.

I think the Panthers are GOOD ENOUGH to make the playoffs with or without him, based on what they could get in return. They need a good top center (they should be able to get that) and they should get another d-man in the deal, with a top pick. So I say go for it.

This Bouwmeester could have already taken the money (he didn't), He sees the future of the team looks better than most of the places he wants to play with the exception of Calgary (and with Keenan your future is five minutes anyway). HE AIN'T STAYING. Get rid of him. I like his game, his offensive prowess, but is negatives are is he's a bit over-rated defensively..I think so, and he'll take a bad penalty often. He's good..but why let him go for nothing. I have so much confidence in Pete taking what he gets in the trade, and having thos players "buy in" so fast, that I think we'll do fine. Seeya Bo, enjoy your new garage full of snow shovels...You don't like it here? BYE!

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