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Playoff Preview: Florida Panthers v New Jersey Devils

PantherslogoFRIDAY'S EASTERN CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS

FIRST ROUND

(3) FLORIDA PANTHERS V (6) NEW JERSEY DEVILS

FlaeasternThe season series: Split the four games; Florida got the extra point.

Last year: Both teams missed the playoffs; Florida is back for the first time since 2000.

Playoff history: Devils swept Florida in 2000.

Friday: Devils at Panthers, 7 p.m.; BankAtlantic Center, Sunrise (WQAM-560; FS Florida, NHL Net)

What to watch:

Believe it or not, but the Panthers have plenty of playoff experience although this is a new experience for a good many.

Going against former coach Pete DeBoer is fun, but shutting down the Devils' top two lines won't be.

JerseyThe Panthers are gritty and the pressure is on the Devils to make some postseason noise for the first time in years.

Who is in net for the Panthers? It looks like Jose Theodore makes his return after a tough couple of outings. Will the extra days off do him some good. The thought here is yes.

Florida's power play has been good at times this season. Florida's entire special teams need to be extremely strong for Devilsthe Panthers to win this series? 

Will they? It'll be close. 

The prediction: Devils in 7.

 

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