The shortened season has certainly had an effect around the league this year.
Players have been getting hurt and the fatigue factor has been settling in despite not even being half way through the season. The biggest factor in the fatigue has been all of the back-to-back games being played.
They've been especially hard on the Flyers, who fell to 2-4-0 in those games after getting drubbed 5-2 at the hands of the Panthers on Thursday.
A part of the lackadaisical performance could be attributed to the emotionally-charged 6-5 win in Pittsburgh the previous night. The trip itself between the Steel City and Philadelphia wasn't exhausting.
(Pictured: Ilya Bryzgalov and Brian Boucher swap places during the Flyers 5-2 loss on Thursday. Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)
With the Red Wings booted out of the playoff early for the first time since 2006, questions swirl around the players, coaching, and management. During the Wings’ 21 year playoff streak, they won Western Conference Championships, Presidents Trophies, six Cup Final appearances, and four Stanley Cups. Much of the credit goes to the general manager: Ken Holland.
April 13th carries a lot of history for Kevin Dineen, coach of the Florida Panthers. It was on this day in 1997 that he scored the last goal in Hartford Whalers history. A good goal it was, too - the game-winner in a 2-1 game vs the Tampa Bay Lightning. Dineen, who was captain of the team, also became the first captain of the Carolina Hurricanes, and he scored the first goal for the 'Canes. So April 13th is a bittersweet day in Hartford hockey history.
Tonight, Kevin Dineen will be in the playoffs. But this time, he's going to be there in his first year as a head coach in the NHL, as the head coach of the Florida Panthers, who will be in their first playoff game since 2...
Sunrise, Fl- When the New York Islanders entered last night's contest with the Florida Panthers it was with the knowledge that failing to get a point would mean mathematical elimination from the playoffs. While the chances of seeing a playoff run this season is unfortunately a long shot, a regulation loss would have eliminated all hope. However, Frans Nielsen and the rest of the Islanders team had other plans in mind. (Photo Credit: AP/Newsday)
The week ahead for the Chicago Blackhawks is going to be a trial-by-fire before they hit the road for their annual "Circus Trip", the two-week road trip that marks every November. It kicks off with the first of two season games against the Florida Panthers (the second will be on United Center ice in late January), followed by a game at Tampa Bay, then it's back home for the first matchup of the season against the Vancouver Canucks.
In light of the trade moves made by Chicago and the free agency signings by Florida this summer, Thurday's Blackhawks-Panthers matchup in Sunrise is a game that many fans on both sides of the ice ...