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Panthers remain on the road, try to snap out of funk against Blue Jackets

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: 13 , 2018 - 06:34:40 Post Id   
aliciahuang
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theres a far different feel with the direction of this club. It has been plagued recently by injuries and inconsistency,As the Blue Jackets pass the halfway point of the 2017-18 season, resulting in a 3-5-2 record in its last 10 games.

the Blue Jackets are keeping pace in the Metropolitan Division. Theyre in third place,Authentic Ryan Miller jersey,Despite their struggles, but only four points behind the first-place Washington Capitals.

The Panthers sit in the middle of the pack in the Atlantic but trail the division-leading Tampa Bay Lightning by 22 points as they play their 41st of 82 games Sunday.

The Ottawa Senators could be severely shorthanded when host the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday.

while Matt Duchene is sick with the flu., head coach Guy Boucher revealed that Derick Brassard, Nate Thompson,After a number of lineup regulars were not on the ice for practice Monday,Authentic Henrik Sedin jersey, Cody Ceci and Johnny Oduya are all injured

" Boucher said. "They could be all out, and they could be all in,"We have to wait and see for (Tuesday), and it could be half-and-half. I don't know."

and will not return before the All-Star break in late January. Thompson sustained a lower-body injury during the Senators game last Friday against the San Jose Sharks,Authentic Bo Horvat jersey,The only thing Boucher said was decided for certain is that Nate Thompson will not play, exiting in the first period.

and it gives an opportunity for other guys to get those minutes and play well," Boucher said. "Right now we have to be prepared for all those scenarios,"We have to go with the players that are ready to go, and tomorrow morning it'll be clearer what we're going to have."

Also added to the equation is that defenseman Mark Borowiecki skated in practice Monday wearing a contact jersey. He has been out since Nov. 19 after sustaining a concussion.

which is very positive.,Authentic Alex Ovechkin jersey, has he gotten enough reps for the timing on the ice," Boucher said. "It's not about the injury right now,"Right now it's more about, so we're at the last step

if we can be more patient it would be smart, but maybe we're an emergency mode where if he can go,adidas T. J. Oshie jersey,"It will depend also on if Oduya and Ceci are ready to go. If they're both ready to go, he can go."

the Senators stormed back to defeat San Jose 6-5 in overtime. The next night, Ottawa coughed up a 3-0 lead of its own,Ottawa is looking for its third straight win following to high-scoring victories on home ice. After spotting the Sharks a three-goal lead on Friday, before scoring three more unanswered goals to defeat the first place Tampa Bay Lightning 6-3.

"It's been like that all year, to be honest with you."," Boucher said. "Whenever we've gotten those good stretch games and we're playing good, all of a sudden, the same thing. We've had injuries, to be honest with you, and it's been tough to battle all year, and guys sick, yes.

apparently,He was, unhappy with the way the Flames were practicing on Friday and launched into an F-bomb-laden tirade that included both the phrase check the standings and impressive distance on the stick toss itself.

It was a bit of a surprise because the Flames are generally playing really well and, with a home game against Anaheim before a four-game road trip., and isnt. Its a criticism that could apply to a few other teams in the division, had picked up two straight wins. So maybe this was an outsized reaction to guys maybe playing at 75 percent intensity in practice, but his point about the standings should be well taken by everyone on that roster: This Flames team has the talent to be cruising in the Pacific, of course, at the time, they had just 20 wins, but through 40 games, and have also played in five three-point games against Western Conference teams. Which is to say theyre giving away a decent amount of points and the team was about to enter a bit of a tough stretch

they maybe come back from that road trip three, four,So the motivation for the meltdown is apparent enough: If the Flames didnt keep up their recent winning ways, or five points back of the last wild card spot.

especially given that there were national TV people in the building, and youve certainly seen less scenery chewing in local dinner theater productions of Death of a Salesman. But sometimes you need a bit of scenery chewing. Its not always a bad thing. Jack Nicholson isnt exactly going for subtle in The Shining,There was some amount of handwringing about how performative the display was, adidas Ryan Miller jersey,right?

frankly, Bruce Boudreau., better than. There were some problems in the third period and drama throughout,And certainly with the Flames dramatic win on Saturday night which barely avoided gifting Anaheim at least an OT point maybe people will say it worked. Its difficult to draw that correlation; the Flames dramatically outplayed a team in the midst of a five-game roadtrip which they are, say, but on the balance the Flames deserved the win. Is that Gulutzans doing? Probably not, but hes done a pretty good job with this club after coming in with plenty of question marks about why he got hired over

especially the power play. And that doesnt make sense for a team with as much top-six talent as the Flames have on hand. Even Micheal Ferland seems to have developed into a nice little skill player check that pass to Dougie Hamilton for the game-winner and when you have that luxury,adidas Henrik Sedin jersey, it doesnt make sense that the Flames should have a minus-3 goal difference,The Flames are currently fourth in the NHL in possession but have a surprisingly low shooting percentage that has almost certainly cost them a number of games. The special teams are wanting, especially because they draw more penalties but commit fewer than the league average.

And as to the possession thing, the Flames have five defenseman who have played at least 500 minutes halfway through the season. Only Hamilton and Mark Giordano are north of 50 percent in possession ,adidas Alex Ovechkin jersey, thats only because their top pairing are beyond dominant, and everyone else is relatively pliable. The problem is, and the rest are a smidge below it. So while this club seemingly has an elite process, those five guys are only on the ice for about a third of the game,adidas Braden Holtby jersey, so that leaves a lot of time in which the Flames arent doing anywhere near as well as the overall numbers would lead you to believe.

The roster problems arent Gulutzans fault, of course. The Flames have a great top-six forward group and probably the best top pair in the league. After that, you run into issues. The first two lines are pushing around opponents quite well,Authentic T. J. Oshie jersey, the third line is doing okay, and the fourth is getting caved in most nights.

Things may only be complicated by what is perceived as a failed experiment with Jaromir Jagr,adidas Bo Horvat jersey, who is now reportedly working with Calgary management on an exit strategy despite some solid underlying numbers in his 22 games. This seems more like an issue of both fit the Flames play fast, albeit against lower-end competition. Still, without Jagr, as does most of the league these days and fitness Jagr seemingly cant stay healthy this year than the sports elder statesman being not good enough to play in this league any more. Calgarys goal difference per 60 rate when Jagr is on the ice at 5-on-5 is among the highest on the team,Authentic Braden Holtby jersey, the Flames forward depth is just a little more exposed, and thats not going to help them win games long-term.

The best thing the NHL has ever done for the All-Star Game, whether you love it or hate it, has been the addition of the 3-on-3 tournament into the mix. Sure, the game doesnt have as much meaning as it used to, but molding the 3-on-3 overtime format to fit the staleness that has become the All-Star Game has added new life to the weekend.

With the release of the upcoming rosters for the 2018 All-Star Game, Jan. 28, we thought itd be best to start dreaming up the most tantalizing 3-on-3 lineups we can possibly ice. Who knows if theyll come true by the time the game rolls around on Sunday, but lets have some fun thinking about the lines we really want to see.

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