Randy Sexton is working the phones like Rick Sanchez after a second pot of coffee this morning as the trade deadline is set for 3 p.m.
It appears that the Panthers are not only sellers, but they will refuse no reasonable offer. Everything must go. I know I said yesterday that I didn't think Tomas Vokoun would be heading out the door and I still don't.
But that's because I believe Randy and Cliff and Stu when they say they want to build for the future and want to get top assets. I don't think they can get the top assets for Vokoun today.
But they could dump a big chunk of their payroll by trading Vokoun. And with the team losing money almost as quickly as they are losing games, that fact cannot be discounted.
As we head into the deadline, here's where the Panthers stand:
-- The team has lost seven straight games and eight of nine.
-- Florida is now ranked 27th in the league -- meaning only three teams are behind the Cats. And Carolina, which is having a disastrous season, is just one point back.
-- Who, who does Randy try to deal today? Again, I would be surprised if Vokoun, Stephen Weiss or Nathan Horton go anywhere today. Two of those three could go in the summertime as this team goes through a major rebuild (No! That frame isn't bent!).
To do the build the Panthers probably need to do, you need to get serious return for players like Weiss, Horton and Vokoun. Those are really the only available players who can bring back the kind of players you need. David Booth might, but he isn't going anywhere -- at least not yet David!
-- So, you have everyone else on the parking lot. Some have their hoods raised, some are parked out back so you don't see the blemishes. And there are plenty of blemishes. The team has scored two goals or less in 14 straight games. That's FOUR with a TEEN straight games. And that is brutal.
I would think Dennis Seidenberg is as good as gone and that sucks. He's a very underrated player and a real cool guy. But business is business. Thanks for the laughs, D.
It will also be tough to see Radek Dvorak go, but hopefully he gets a chance to win that ring. He's been close. Dvorak has one year left on the deal he signed the past offseason and has a cap hit of $1.7 million.
Captain Bryan McCabe probably is safe, but only because of his massive contract. He counts for $5.75 million next season in the final year of his deal.
Bryan Allen also probably sticks around because he has two more years at $2.9 million; same goes for Rostislav Olesz (four years after this at $3.125 per).
TSN has Cory Stillman and Steven Reinprecht high on their list of available forwards. Really? OK, Stillman I can see. He's a veteran guy who has lifted the Cup in his career. And he's scored a few goals of late. Of course, he has that pesky contract with one year left at $3.5 million.
Reinprecht is probably going to be harder to move and will bring much less. That's because he not only has two years left on his deal, but he hasn't registered a single in 14 games. That's right. FOUR with a TEEN. Reinprecht also hasn't scored a goal in 20. Not what you want from a player you pegged to be center of your second line coming into the season.
As far as RFA guys go, I'm sure Kamil Kreps and Gregory Campbell are available to the right suitor, although Campbell is pretty popular around the organization and they might want to keep him around.
Scott Clemmensen is also out there, but he has two more years left after this season. They might want to pull him into the showroom.
-- Again, going to be around all day today. For the latest, up to the minute news, sign up for both our Facebook fan page (On Frozen Pond) and Twitter (@OnFrozenPond). The cellphone is charged, I'm heading to Starbucks and then to the arena.
Should have new videos up sometime this afternoon after the dust has settled. Have already confirmed we're going to get Randy, but will also try to get Cliff, Stu or Cliff and Stu as well as Pete DeBoer and whatever players I can grab flying out of the parking lot on their way to the playoffs.
Should be a very, very, interesting day.