After presiding over morning practice Thursday at City Sports Arena in Detroit, Panthers coach Peter DeBoer went to the University of Windsor to address sports management students and law faculty. DeBoer holds a law degree from the University of Windsor/University of Detroit and was invited to speak by Prof. Jess Dixon, brother of Mike Dixon, the Panthers manager of team services.
The Panthers have arrived in Detroit for Thursday’s game against the Red Wings on their best run of the season. After starting the season 2-7-1, the Panthers have gone 6-2-1 and are only four points out of playoff spot with games in hand. Having won Wednesday in Buffalo, the Panthers have won six of their last nine, have earned points in five of their last seven games, and have won three of their last four.
With back-to-back road games here in Detroit and Saturday against the Rangers, DeBoer said he’ll go with Scott Clemmensen
in goal against the Red Wings and come back in New York with Tomas Vokoun.
Clemmensen hasn’t played since allowing seven goals Nov. 7 in a 7-4 loss to the Capitals. “We don’t want to play (Vokoun) back-to-back on 24 hours and travel,” DeBoer said. “Obviously, (the Rangers) is a conference game and that probably factored into it.”
Goalie Chris Osgood, who’s missed a week with the flu, is expected back in goal against the Panthers.
Defenseman Bryan Allen and winger Nathan Horton didn’t practice Thursday, but DeBoer said it was only for “maintenance” and both would play Friday. QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Everyone talks about the playoffs like it’s a dirty word. I never promised we’d make it this year, but if that’s not your goal every year in this business, do something else, go drive a truck.” Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke in the Toronto Sun.