Originally posted on Blackhawks Down Low  |  Last updated 11/3/11

Look less excited, Soupy.

 

Game Time: 6:30 PM

TV/Radio: CSN-Chicago WGN 720

Last year: Panthers won 3-2 in Florida, Hawks won 4-0 at the UC

 

(Here comes the most obvious introduction to a preview)

 

Tonight, the Blackhawks (wait for it....wait for it....) take their talents to South Beach (Bam!) to take on Uncle Dale’s new and improved (maybe) Florida Panthers. The Panthers made waves this summer by signing. Scottie Upshall, Tomas Fleischmann,Sean Bergenheim, Marcel Goc, Matt Bradley, Ed Jovanovski, and Jose Theodore. Joining them via trade were the familiar faces of Brian Campbell, Kris Versteeg and Tomas Kopecky, who were all acquired via trade. They joined the always popular and overhyped Jack Skilie. Skillz seems to get excited to face former teammates, getting into it with Buff and Ladd on Monday night.

Anyway, the Panthers are out to a 6-4-1 start out of the gate and that is largely due to the offensive performance of none other than Campbell. Soupy has 11 assists already this year (had 22 all of last season) and has seen a lot of on the power play where he has been very effective (WHO WOULD HAVE SEEN THAT COMING?!?!?!?!?!) where he has 8 assists. Yes, you read that correctly. Campbell is also an alternate captain on the team, which seems cool, but then you realized that Kopecky is also, and that takes away from it. Campbell’s 11 assists leads the team in scoring, which says a lot of what you need to know.

But who leads the Panthers in goals? Among those is none other than the world’s least favorite rapper, Kris Versteeg who has 5 goals which is tied with Fleischmann and Jason Garrison. Versteeg’s six assists to go along with those are enough to tie him with Campbell on points. Versteeg has had his usual offensive flair to go along with a complete sense of apathy on defense, but he does have 3 goals on the power play. Garrison has been a surprise this year, as his give goals are the most among defesemen in the league.

But scoring has been a problem for Florida so far this year. Kopecky has only lit the lamp once this year as has Scottie Upshall, who was expected to contribute a lot more but has since been demoted to the Panther’s fourth line. Adding to the Panthers scoring woes is the shocker that Jack Skille hasn’t scored this year. Uncle Dale noticed the scoring issues and decided that David Booth was to pay the price, sending the Detroit native and the rest of his $4.5 million cap hit for the next four seasons to Vancouver for old men Marco Sturm and Mikael Samuelsson, who have their contracts expiring at the end of the year. There was some surprised around the locker room, as Booth was said to have broken down in tears from the trade. But if there’s one thing we’ve learned about Dale, it’s that he likes to overspend. If there’s another thing, it’s that he likes to leave his mark on a team. Booth was signed under the previous GM and wasn’t really one of Tallon’s guys, and we know how loyal Tallon is to his guys. Remember  the time he traded  Michael Frolik for Jack Skille? Thanks Dale!

Meanwhile, we will see a bit of a shaken up Hawks team tonight. Duncan Keith is out with an “upper body” injury after leaving the game on Monday after a puck hit him in the hand. The only worrisome thing about this is that the guy lost several teeth during a game and returned to win the conference. With Keith out, Nick Leddy will most likely be paired with Sean O’Donnell on defense tonight. This also means that Sami Lepisto will continue with a run in the team. The team will be in front of the always Cramazing Corey Crawford tonight (Q hinted that Emery will start in Tampa Friday night).

Q hit the slots and thus promoted Viktor Stalberg to the first line, replacing the returned from suspension Dan Carcillo who will now be on the fourth line. It’s a nice reward for Stalberg, who was great on Saturday and Monday for the Hawks and has earned the chance to skate with Toews. Patrick Sharp will move to the second line with Hossa and Kane after the Carcillo move. Sadly, John Scott will probably get his three minutes of ice time, or maybe Q will give a not too emotional homecoming to Rostislav Olesz.

Over on the power play, it’s been mentioned that Montador could see some time with Keith out and why not at this point? The power play has somehow taken a step back form last season, but did look better on Monday. As many have mentioned, it seems like once the Hawks find a way to break through the floodgates will open. However, that hasn’t happened yet and no better time than now. The sooner this gets moving, the better. With all the talent out there, the Hawks have the potential to be explosive. And since the Hawks are on the road, there’s no excuse for the stupid power play song/dance for the next couple games.

Last year the Hawks were playing their best hockey before stumbling in Florida. There’s a big game at the United Center Sunday night and it would be nice to see the Hawks put on a show for their Dads. It’s going to be important to hit the ground running and not fall behind early.

Also, be sure to check out Kelly’s new adventures over at  Puck Drunk Love.

Let's Go Hawks.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Doc Rivers shoots down report of rift with Chris Paul

Report: Jimmy Butler recruiting Kyle Lowry to the Timberwolves

WATCH: Tim Tebow didn't waste any time homering after promotion

Nolan Arenado throws out runner from seated position

Report: Chris Paul ‘despises’ Doc Rivers, had issues with treatment of son Austin

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

NFL fans in Florida seem to like Tom Brady more than any of their three teams’ players

Mayweather-McGregor fight is reportedly seeking a $10 million title sponsor

Terry Francona wearing heart monitor in case of another 'episode'

Albert Almora denies flipping off President Donald Trump during White House visit

Blazers post hilarious tweets after acquiring cash from Rockets

Chip Kelly defends Kaepernick: He was not a distraction

Box Score 6/29: Cash is doing well this NBA offseason

The 'You get a steal! You get a steal! Everybody gets a steal!' quiz

Rewriting the Hall of Fame rubric for today's pitchers

Top NBA free agents available

Box Score 6/28: New York loses its zen

Although you have seen this start before, this season is no sequel for the Dodgers

The 'Power hitters are coming for that number one spot' quiz

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

BIG3 Referee Hotline Bling: Ricky Davis takes unnecessary shots at Al Harrington

Who won Wimbledon the year you were born?

Box Score 6/27: Monday is for all sorts of ballers

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'You get a steal! You get a steal! Everybody gets a steal!' quiz

Rewriting the Hall of Fame rubric for today's pitchers

2017 is not another disappointing sequel for the Dodgers

BIG3 Referee Hotline Bling: Ricky Davis takes unnecessary shots at Al Harrington

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

The 'Power hitters are coming for that number one spot' quiz

Big3 brings summer festival feel to basketball with barnstorming tour

The 'Tonight, we settle the Beard vs. Brodie debate' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The 8th Man Award for most overlooked player this year

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker