Pre-Game Notes: Pens vs. Panthers

The Pens will play the Panthers tonight in their second match against the team this season. They first met on October 11th in the Pens home opener. The Pens had won 4-2, which began James Neal’s home game scoring streak, and added one for Matt Cooke, Pascal Dupuis and Richard Park.

The Pens have won their last 5 against Florida, but the Panthers are performing rather well this season, holding a record of 9-6-3 and sitting tied for first in the Southeast Division with Washington. However, most of the Panthers success this season has been on the road.

Some things to look for tonight will be:

  • Kris Versteeg. After a flop of a second half of the season in Philadelphia, Versteeg was dealt to the Panthers in the off-season. He is 10th in the league in points, having racked up 9 goals and11 assists, including a hat trick against Winnipeg. Four of his goals have been on the power play.
  • It looks like Jacob Markstrom from the Panther’s AHL team has been recalled from San Antonio. Markstrom has made quite an impression in his five games with the Panthers, including 2 wins. He made 40 saves against the Habs, allowing only one goal. Pretty incredible game. No word on if he will see any game time tonight. Reports from the Sun Sentinel say Jose Theodore likely will start tonight. Scott Clemmensen didn’t show up for morning skate today.
  • Jordan Staal is on a three game scoring streak.
  • Brent Johnson may be in net, per a cryptic statement from Head Coach Dan Bylsma regarding Fleury and Beej  both getting playing time for the Dad’s trip (and the fact the Johnny has a great record against Florida). So far, he has only one win in 5 appearances this season. He posted 2 wins against the Panthers last season.
  • No Sid tonight. Had to be said. Stop asking. The agony of Crosby Watch continues.
  • Puck drops at 7:30.

And I just love showing this shootout goal. 🙂 First game I ever went to a game where there was a shootout.

Let’ s  Go Pens!

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