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Category: Florida-Panthers

Panthers Don’t Feel Pressure To Make The Playoffs

from George Richards of the Miami Herald,

The Panthers haven’t been to the playoffs since 2000, a postseason drought that could tie an NHL record if the team fails to advance once more this season.

Some might think that pressure weighs heavily on the players and coaches.

For others?

“Listen, we have nothing to lose here,’’ defenseman Keith Ballard said. “No one expects us to be in the playoffs because we haven’t been in the playoffs in forever. I haven’t been there, a lot of guys in this room haven’t been there. Let’s just leave it out there. We don’t need to be in the playoffs today or tomorrow. We just need to be there after Game 82.”

Coach Pete DeBoer said the current crop of Panthers shouldn’t have to be completely linked to the failures of the past.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

David Booth’s Return Is Uncertain

from George Richards of the Miami Herald,

The Panthers have been saying that injured winger David Booth is expected to return to the lineup sometime this month.

Coach Pete DeBoer on Saturday added some doubt to that timeline, saying that it’s possible Booth could be done for the season.

Booth, who led the team in goals last season, was knocked unconscious by Philadelphia captain Mike Richards in a brutal open-ice hit on Oct. 24. Booth sustained a major concussion and has resumed skating and working out. But DeBoer said Booth’s return is an uncertainty.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: david+booth

Panthers Still Angry About Ricards Hit

from Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel,

How does David Booth feel toward Flyers center Mike Richards, who dealt him the concussion that’s caused him to sit out two months and at least three more weeks?

“Uh…yeah, I mean, that’s…you know…uh…there’s…uh…I don’t know. I can’t say anything,” Booth said, unable to muster more in a span of 15 seconds.

Is Booth angry?

“Yeah I’m angry. How could you not be angry? Everyone would be angry.”

The Florida Panthers will play the Flyers on Monday night for the first time since Richards drove his left shoulder into Booth’s head at full speed on Oct. 24, a hit that dropped Booth flat on his face on the Wachovia Center ice and sent him to the hospital.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: david+booth, mike+richards

Evening Line

“To get the fans back they have to play well and to me, I like to go and see some superstars. I’m not a big fan of golf but when I know Tiger Woods is playing I’m going to watch him. I like Dwayne Wade because it’s attractive to have a superstar because a superstar gives you something other people can’t.’‘

“I love the breakaways, penalty shots, the shootouts.  That’s what they did in the World Cup and we should do in the playoffs, too, instead of playing until 3 a.m. Even if it’s 0-0, people get excited for the shootout.’‘

-Pavel Bure on the Panthers and the shootout.  More from Harvey Fialkov at the Sun-Sentinel.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavel+bure

When Panthers Collide

Word is Gregory Campbell is OK, just a little dazed from the hit.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gregory+campbell

Afternoon Line

“I saw it on tape, and it looks awful. The sad part is people see this, little kids see it, and they think maybe that’s the way professional guys act. It’s not something I’ve ever done, and it’s not something I’ll do again. I’m terribly sorry.”

-Keith Ballard of the Florida Panthers on the Vokoun incident.  More from Keith by Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+ballard

Afternoon Line

via Reid Cherner & Tom Weir of Game On Blog at USA TODAY,

If Ballard’s swing had felled an opponent, the call would be out to have him banned for the season. Just because his stupidity hurt only a teammate is no reason to go lightly on his punishment. He needs at least a couple of weeks off the ice.

added 12:42pm, from Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel,

Yes, what Ballard did was stupid. But it’s a stupid action that’s commonly done in frustration and accepted as the norm in the NHL.

But it’s easy to be almighty and righteous and pile on Ballard—Hey, who’d be stupid enough to smack his own goalie, right? It’s also unfair.

more

added 1:10pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Suppose an NHL player wound up and took a two-handed swing with his hockey stick, baseball-style, which connected with another player squarely in the face.

Suppose that injured player received a laceration on the ear and was forced to leave the game on a stretcher.

What would be the penalty?

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+ballard

Reaction To The Ballard ‘Swing’

from Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel,

Ballard didn’t talk to the media after tonight’s game, which is understandable considering what he went through with accidentally smacking goalie Tomas Vokoun in the head with his stick and then having the winning Thrashers’ goal score on a shot off his stick.

I feel bad for him personally.

Yes, what he did was stupid, and unneccessary. But I see players smashing their sticks on the crossbar or post after a goal or after a loss all the time. It’s as common in hockey as fighting.

That said, I wonder if players around the league will think twice now before doing it. Bryan Allen said after the game: “I’ve done the same thing—break a stick on the post—and I didn’t even think twice. Obviously I won’t do it again. I’m sure he won’t either.

I give Ballard credit for coming back and playing. If it was me and I had skated off the ice in shock and horror at what happened, I’m not sure I could have come back on the ice again that night.

Everyone was supportive of Ballard concerning the incident.

more and if you miseed the video, watch it here...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+ballard

Strange Night In The NHL

from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,

Although the NHL rulebook does not specifically stipulate a fine or suspension for kneeing, supplementary discipline can be applied at the discretion of the commissioner.

And you’d have to think that’s exactly what will happen, given that Georges Laraque of the Montreal Canadiens recently received a five-game suspension for his knee-on-knee hit that injured Detroit Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall. One big difference was that Gleason came back to play the rest of the game (Kronwall’s out for at least a month), while Ovechkin looked to take the worse of the hit, leaving the game and not returning.

Ovechkin also received a major penalty and game misconduct for boarding last week when he drilled Patrick Kaleta of the Buffalo Sabres head-first into the boards. Ovechkin did not receive supplementary discipline for that hit, but likely won’t be that lucky this time around.

Although NHL vice-president and director of hockey operations Colin Campbell would not say whether Ovechkin will face a hearing, he did say that Florida Panthers defenseman Keith Ballard will not be suspended for hitting his own goalie, Tomas Vokoun, with a two-handed baseball swing in the Panthers 3-2 loss to the Atlanta Thrashers.

“It will be on every sports highlight show for the next week,” Campbell said. “If that’s not enough of a punishment…”

more Ovechkin and Vokoun talk…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexander+ovechkin, tomas+vokoun

Vokoun Hit In Head By Stick Of Teammate Ballard

via the CP at TSN,

Florida Panthers goaltender Tomas Vokoun was taken off the ice on a stretcher after he was accidentally hit in the head by the stick of teammate Keith Ballard in the opening period of Monday night’s game against the Atlanta Thrashers.

Vokoun had a laceration to his ear but was alert when he was placed in an ambulance and taken to a local hospital, a Panthers spokesman said.

The incident occurred after Atlanta’s Ilya Kovalchuk scored a goal at 8:54 of the first period, knocking in his own rebound. In apparent frustration, Ballard swung his stick at the net, inadvertently striking Vokoun in the head.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+ballard, tomas+vokoun

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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