Quick updates and thoughts before tonight's game. Panthers are in New Jersey tonight to take on the Devils. The Devils have been without goalie Martin Brodeur since early November, as he had surgery to repair a torn biceps muscle. Kevin Weekes and Scott Clemmensen have been sharing the crease since. The Devils have been off since Saturday, when they beat Washington, -6-5, in a shootout. Clemmensen was in net and made only 20 saves. No confirmation yet as to who will be between the pipes tonight. Zach Parise leads the Devils offense with 20 points (12 G, 8 A).
The Panthers will try to keep their recent hot streak going. The Cats have won 3 of their last 4 after going through a miserable 0-5-1 stretch. Cory Stillman is still out, but the Panthers could get one more healthy body back tonight. Kamil Kreps has been skating and might make his return tonight. Tomas Vokoun is expected to be in net after his stellar performance Tuesday night in Tampa. Brian McCabe has a 4 game point streak going, and has brought an immediate resurgence to the power play. The offense starts from the blue line for the Panthers, as McCabe, Jay Bouwmeester, and Keith Ballard have been the ignition switch. If they have good games, the Panthers will have a good night. I'm still waiting to see more grit and determination from Nathan Horton. If you take the effort that David Booth, or Radek Dvorak, or Greggory Campbell, and add that with Nathan Horton's talent, the Panthers offense could finally start to wake up. We'll see what we get tonight. Puck drops at 7.