After starting the season 16-8-4 in their first 28 games, and appearing to run away with the division, the Panthers came crashing down to earth. The team posted a 5-7-6 record over their next 18 games, and looked suddenly vulnerable to divisional threats in Washington and Winnipeg, as well as threats to their top-eight standing. They seem to have turned their fortunes around, going 6-2-1 in their last nine games. They look tonight to earn their first four game winning streak since March of 2008. The Panthers have had 14 occasions since then to win a fourth straight game, posting an 0-14-0 record in those instances. They may have their best shot tonight. They take on a tired Ottawa Senators squad coming off a 4-0 road blanking of the Tampa Bay Lightning last night. Florida, meanwhile, has had three days off since beating the Devils and Islanders on back-to-back road games this weekend.
Senators defenseman Filip Kuba
played in 18 games for the Panthers over two seasons from 1998-2000. He scored one goal and six assists with a minus-one rating and two penalty minutes.
Senators goalie Craig Anderson
played in 53 games over three seasons for the Panthers, going 24-14-7 with a .928 save percentage and a 2.52 GAA. Anderson is fourth on Florida's all-time list with five shutouts in goal.
The Senator's other goalie, Alex Auld
, also logged time with Florida, playing 27 games in 2006-07. He went 7-13-5 with an .888 save percentage and a 3.34 GAA.
Games: Shawn Matthias plays in game number 181 today, moving past Jesse Belanger into 45th all-time.
Goals: Jason Garrison is in 50th with 20 goals. Shawn Matthias is tied in 46th with Dave Gagner, with 24 goals. Mike Van Ryn sits in 45th, with 25. Mike Santorelli is tied with Gary Roberts and Mike Hough in 42nd, with 27 goals, one more will move him into a tie for 41st with Brian McCabe.
Mike Weaver, Brian Campbell, Tomas Fleischmann - 55
Kris Versteeg - 22
Tomas Fleischmann - 18
Stephen Weiss, Jason Garrison - 13
Brian Campbell - 35
Stephen Weiss - 27
Kris Versteeg - 26
Kris Versteeg - 48
Tomas Fleischmann - 42
Stephen Weiss - 40
Stephen Weiss - plus-8
Jason Garrison - plus-6
Kris Versteeg - plus-5
Kris Versteeg - 6.4
Jason Garrison - 6.1
Brian Campbell, 5.9