Wholesale Florida Panthers Jerseys

Florida Panthers
Florida Panthers

Good morning and welcome to “Cats & Coffee,” a weekly segment presented by Community Coffee in which we get you caffeinated with an exciting look at the week ahead for the Florida Panthers.

The Florida Panthers are hoping the ping pong balls will bounce in their favor when the order of the first 15 picks in June’s draft are decided at the 2018 NHL Draft Lottery on Saturday, April 28 in Toronto.

The lottery will consist of three drawings to determine which team will pick first, second and third overall in the first round of the draft, which will be held at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas on Friday, June 22.

After finishing the season with 96 points – the most points among teams that did not qualify for the playoffs — Florida enters the lottery with a 1.0 percent chance of landing the No. 1 overall selection and a 3.3 percent shot at a top-three pick.

Buffalo, which finished with the fewest points, has an 18.5 percent chance of landing the top pick, with Ottawa (13.5) and Arizona (11.5) right behind them.

Once the top three picks are decided, the 12 remaining teams will be slotted in order of their 2017-18 regular-season records, from worst to best, to round out the top 15 selections.

If the Panthers fail to move into the top three, they will hold the 15th overall pick.

Stay tuned to @FlaPanthers on Twitter for updates on lottery night.
HOME TEAM FINALE

They’re proud to be Panthers.

In the final episode of the four-part miniseries Home Team: Florida Panthers, Roberto Luongo plays in his 1,000th NHL game as the team looks ahead to a promising future after falling just short of the playoffs with 96 points.

If you missed any episodes of the incredible behind-the-scenes series, all of them can be found at FloridaPanthers.com.

JOIN THE TERRITORY

There’s never been a better time to become a Season Ticket Holder.

Join the Panthers as they celebrate their 25th anniversary during the 2018-19 season and enjoy all the benefits that come with being a Season Ticket Holder, such as merchandise discounts, exclusive savings on concessions and priority access to concerts and events.

“We’re here because of your commitment,” said Panthers President & CEO Matthew Caldwell to season ticket holders. “Your support and passion for hockey in South Florida means the world to us and we are honored to have you as a part of our family. We look forward to having you as a part of this historic 25th anniversary season, while making exciting new memories.”

Visit https://www.nhl.com/panthers/tickets or call (954) 835-PUCK to learn more.
CATS IN THE COMMUNITY

COLD COFFEE (IN CASE YOU MISSED IT)

– The Panthers trusted the system in the first season under new head coach Bob Boughner.

– In the final entry of his blog, defenseman Alexander Petrovic looks back on the big steps the Panthers took this season.

– Aleksander Barkov has been named a finalist for the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy for the second time in his career.

– Roberto Luongo is a finalist for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.

– The Panthers were one of the toughest teams in the NHL this season.

– What does it take to become an NHL equipment manager? Find out from Panthers head equipment manager Teddy Richards in this week’s episode of the “Territory Talk” podcast!

 

Wholesale Los Angeles Kings Jerseys

Los Angeles Kings
Los Angeles Kings

NBC analyst Mike Milbury said Monday night that he wouldn’t be shocked to see the expansion Vegas Golden Knights to go “further than the second round.”

“They could actually play in June,” he said. “I shake my head when I say that, but it’s gone too long now.”

The Golden Knights continued one of the most fascinating seasons in pro history Tuesday when they downed the Los Angeles Kings with another 1-0 win to finish a four-game sweep of the Western Conference quarterfinal series.

Here are five reasons why the Golden Knights could win the Stanley Cup:

Fleury’s flying: No one, including the Boston Bruins’ David Pastrnak, is having a greater impact for his team than Vegas goalie Marc-Andre Fleury. In his first three games, he had a 0.84 goals-against average and a .970 save percentage. Fleury, 33, might be playing the best hockey of his noteworthy career. He has been the Golden Knights’ MVP all season. He oozes charm, confidence and charisma. He was born to play in Las Vegas.

Pushy style: The Golden Knights have been in playoff mode since October. Most teams build up their intensity and championship ambition. But the Golden Knights stormed out of the gates in full gallop, displaying a speed-based, hard-charging, relentless, attacking style that is perfect for playoff success. Opponents believed the Golden Knights wouldn’t be able to sustain this taxing style into the playoffs. That theory has proved to be incorrect.

#VegasStrong: Vegas players wanted to do what they could to help their community heal from the mass shooting that left 58 dead just before the season opened. They have forged a bond with the community that seems to inspire them at every home game. Everyone in town is talking about the Golden Knights, and the overwhelming fan support has already made T-Mobile Arena one of the NHL’s loudest buildings. It’s a challenging road game for opponents.

Gallant men: Coach Gerard Gallant has played a major role in transforming a patchwork collection of players into a championship-caliber team. He is a player’s coach, an old-school hockey guy who gets the most out of his players by empowering them and propping up their confidence. He’s an overwhelming favorite to win the Jack Adams Award as coach of the year.

Everything to prove, nothing to lose: Every player, coach and member of management came from somewhere else. Everyone performed this season as if they had a chip on their shoulder because their previous team deemed them expendable. Every game, the Golden Knights had someone on the roster who previously played for that night’s opponent and had a special reason to beat that team. That attitude fueled a unified effort to play every game with passion and purpose. The feeling that everyone had something to prove has now carried into the playoffs. It is working even better.

 

Wholesale Minnesota Wild Jerseys

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — The Minnesota Wild played the season finale with more urgency even though it was the San Jose Sharks who had something at stake.

Jason Zucker scored twice in the second period, Eric Staal matched the franchise record for goals in a season and the Wild denied San Jose home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs with a 6-3 victory over the Sharks on Saturday night.
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While the Wild were locked into the third seed in the Central Division, the Sharks needed one point to finish second in the Pacific and open the playoffs at home. Instead, San Jose lost for the fifth time in the final six games and will be forced to hit the road to start the playoffs against Anaheim in the first meeting between the rivals since the Ducks upset the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Sharks in 2009.

“It was disappointing tonight, but one game doesn’t define our season,” coach Peter DeBoer said. “I think if someone told me a month ago that we’d have 100 points, I would have taken that, regardless if we had home-ice or who we were playing or not.”

Mikael Granlund scored the tiebreaking goal 28 seconds before Zucker got his first and Jonas Brodin and Matt Cullen also scored for the Wild. Staal added an empty-net goal to tie Marian Gaborik’s franchise record for goals in a season with 42.

“I wasn’t going to miss that one,” Staal said. “It’s cool, it’s fun to have that alongside Marian, he’s a great player and a great goal scorer, so it was fun.”

Devan Dubnyk made 27 saves. Minnesota finished the season with 101 points, going over the 100-point mark for the second straight season and fourth time in franchise history.

“I thought our team played really hard,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. “I don’t know if (San Jose) took the night off, or not, I’m hoping to believe that we played well enough that we didn’t give them an opportunity.”

Brent Burns, Joe Pavelski and Timo Meier scored for San Jose. Martin Jones allowed five goals on 19 shots before being replaced by Aaron Dell to start the third period.

The Sharks started strong in the second period and held Minnesota without a shot for more than eight minutes. But the Wild then struck twice within less than a minute midway through the period to take control.

Granlund started it with a wrist shot for his 21st goal before Zucker took over with two goals of his own, giving him 33 on the season and the Wild coasted from there to the victory.

“We didn’t play too well,” Sharks forward Logan Couture said. “We should have played better. Disappointing. I think over 82 games in the season we had a pretty solid year to make the playoffs.”

The Wild started fast, holding San Jose to no shots on goal for nearly nine minutes and taking a 2-0 lead on goals from Brodin and Cullen.

The Sharks then found their game late in the period and scored twice in 64 seconds to tie it, with Burns getting the first on a shot from the point and Pavelski tying the game after a turnover by Matt Dumba.

NOTES: Wild D Louie Belpedio made his NHL debut after signing a contract earlier this week following a four-year career at Miami of Ohio. He had two assists to become the first Minnesota player ever with two points in his debut. … Sharks F Evander Kane returned to the lineup after missing two games with an undisclosed injury. … Brodin’s goal gave him 100 career points.

Wholesale Montreal Canadiens Jerseys

It was a week when everything seemed to conspire to remind me of the days when I was first writing sports columns back in the mid-1990s — and to remind us all that the times are a-changing.

The nostalgic mood was struck first by Vladimir Guerrero Jr. appearing at the Olympic Stadium wearing number 27. His father (a no-show for his son’s debut at the Big O) was a splinter at this age, but apart from that there are many similarities, including the fact the younger Guerrero never saw a pitch he didn’t like. When he hit a walk-off home run for the game’s only run in the ninth inning Tuesday night, it was as though he were all younger, livelier, more hopeful.

But even then, the changes hit home: the home run was hit for the Blue Jays, not the Expos. The younger Guerrero will begin his career in Toronto, not Montreal. And while Stephen Bronfman hit a hopeful note in his remarks to the press, the Expos (at least for now) do not exist.

Later in the week, we learned Canadiens PR maven Donald Beauchamp is hanging them up after 25 years in what may be the toughest job in this city. Caught between journalists who demand every scrap of information there is to be had in both official languages and Canadiens management, which would prefer they get nothing at all, Beauchamp steered a masterful middle course for a quarter-century.

Beauchamp and I were friends and occasional antagonists for two decades. More than once, a quiet word from Beauchamp kept me from embarrassing myself in public even more than usual. He will be missed.

Then came more somber news: former Canadiens defenceman Lyle Odelein was in serious condition in a Pittsburgh hospital with as yet undiagnosed health problem. The 49-year-old Odelein was a lively, funny, plain-spoken and thoroughly genuine athlete when I first came on the beat, my first go-to guy in the room, possessor of a fierce crush on Shania Twain and a ready wit.

There are dozens of Odelein stories we could tell, but the one that comes to mind was the time Eric Lindros pounded another Canadiens defenceman (who shall remain nameless) into the ice. I noticed Odelein skated up and said something to the big guy afterward, so I asked Odelein what it was.

Odelein laughed. “I said: ‘Why’d you go and do that? Now I have to fight you for him, and I hate that $@*%*@#!”

Finally, there was this note posted by sports columnist Stu Cowan — and it was not an April Fool’s gem: On April 1, 1989, Patrick Roy completed an unbeaten season at home, going 25-0-4 as the Canadiens tied Philadelphia at the Forum, 2-2.

I had to blink twice as I stared at that statistic: 29 home starts in one season, zero losses. Try to connect numbers like that to Carey Price and today’s Canadiens. It’s unthinkable.

All in all, our nostalgic reverie points to one conclusion: the times are a-changing, and the Canadiens are not changing with them. Or at least they’re not changing fast enough. Under Geoff Molson and Marc Bergevin, the once-great CH is becoming one of the most hide-bound, conservative organizations in the game. It isn’t serving them well.

Grant McCagg, the hockey scout who has teamed up with Brian Wilde on recrutes.ca to offer some of the most astute observations on all things Canadiens to be found, posted this on Twitter: “Bergevin is old school and his two main assistants in (Larry) Carrière and Rick Dudley are eligible for pensions. Hired (Claude) Julien, almost signed (Milan) Lucic, picked up (Karl) Alzner for a top-4 role. Those are outdated decisions.”

McCagg pointed to the Leafs analytics guru Kyle Dubas (age 31 and tipped to succeed Lou Lamoriello as GM as early as this coming season) as an example of the new blood the Canadiens need. “Not one offensive-minded teacher in the organization,” McCagg said. “It’s time to move into the 21st century. The game is evolving.”

I think there’s still room for a wise old head or two in front offices and I’m not necessarily sold on whiz-kid GMs with analytics backgrounds, but there is no doubt: the game is evolving and it is time to move into the 21st century.

Yet the Canadiens seem to prefer to wallow in nostalgia as they try to work their way back to the formula that succeeded when they had Patrick Roy, the best money goaltender of all time, between the pipes. Whatever else he may be, Price is no Roy and even if he was, there’s no indication the formula works in today’s NHL.

Instead, the Canadiens need to find coaches who can unlock the potential in Jonathan Drouin and Alex Galchenyuk, and front office people who understand the days when you can carve out a pretty good NHL career while skating like Hal Gill or Guillaume Latendresse are over. The league is not only changing, it’s changing fast. If you get left up the track, it could take a decade or more to recover.

Nostalgia is fine for aging sports columnists and Jefferson Airplane cover bands. For sports organizations, it can result in a lengthy stay on the can’t-compete list.