Things feel weird here tonight though.
Color guy Denis Potvin is doing his commentary from the spot between the benches, the Panthers are wearing white, and Jared the Quiznos Guy not only dropped the ceremonial puck but gave away some of those $8 Footlong (these are the Canadian version) T-shirts.
Dig these black Chicago alternates though.
-- Panthers are going old school tonight and wearing the 'road' whites. First time Florida has wore the white sweaters at home this season. They agreed to do it so Chicago could wear its black alternates.
Apparently Chicago brought the blacks to Dallas for the opener of this road trip and asked Tampa and Florida if they could keep wearing them so the equipment guys didn't have to haul around two sets of unis.
Personally, I think the Panthers should wear the whites at home all the time. Wish the NHL would go back to that. But that's just me.
-- Potvin has a great view tonight, working the game from ice level between the two benches. Should be a good show. Goldie's upstairs all by himself.
-- Jared did a nice job dropping the puck, but proved these new NHL jerseys make guys look fat. OK, they make me look fat. That and my head.
-- Line from one of the people up here: ''Hopefully we'll have the Hamburgler on Saturday.''
One can only hope.
-- Here's part of tomorrow's notebook. Figured some of y'all would be interested:
David Booth is likely going to be invited to the USA Hockey camp being held in Chicago this summer and is a prime candidate to be part of the U.S. Entry at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver. The Panthers' leading goal scorer this season, Booth says it would be a dream come true to play in the games.
''Being there is my goal and is something I think about a lot,'' Booth said Thursday. ''I think playing for your country is a the greatest honor a hockey player can get. That and winning the Stanley Cup go hand in hand. That would mean everything to me.''
Booth, from Detroit, got a taste of international competition after last season when he and goalie Craig Anderson represented the Panthers with Team USA at the World Championships.
''That was a great experience and I got to know some of the guys and develop a little chemistry,'' Booth said. ''That was also a time for USA Hockey to evaluate me. I hope it helped. I want to be in camp in August and I'll train for it and work to make the team. I'd do anything to be on that team. If it means skating every day over the summer, I'll do it.''