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A Look Ahead Dec. 15-20

by Mike Lewis / Florida Panthers

Jumping into the playoff hunt over their recent road trip, the Cats return home to face an old Southeast Division rival before heading out to Pennsylvania for a two-game road trip.

STORYLINES TO WATCH

- G Roberto Luongo is two wins shy from tying former Panther G Mike Vernon for 12th among all-time NHL goaltenders with 385 wins.

- F Vincent Trocheck returns to his hometown.

TUESDAY'S TILT

Dec. 16 vs. Washington Capitals (14-10-5)

All-Time Record against Washington: 44-50-9-9

All-Time Home Record against Washington: 25-23-4-4

The Cats faced Washington Oct. 18, falling 2-1 in a shootout in the Nation's capital. Florida's last five games against the Capitals have been one-goal games, with three of the last five leading to shootout finishes.

KNOW YOUR OPPOSITION -- WASHINGTON

- F Alex Ovechkin has recorded 64 points (31-33−64) in 50 career games against FLA.

- F Nicklas Backstrom has recorded 41 points (9-32−41) in 37 career games against FLA.

- D Mike Green has recorded 19 points (5-14−19) in 39 career games against FLA.

- G Braden Holtby owns a 6-0-0 record with one shutout in six career games against FLA.

- G Justin Peters owns a 3-1-1 record in five career games against FLA.

CATS VS. CAPS

D Brian Campbell has recorded 21 points (4-17−21) in 38 career games against WSH.

- F Jussi Jokinen has posted 25 points (12-13−25) in 34 career games against WSH.

- F Jonathan Huberdeau has posted five points (2-3−5) in eight career games against WSH.

- G Roberto Luongo owns a 19-10-0 record and two shutouts in 34 career games against WSH.

- G Al Montoya owns a 0-1-1 record in three career games against WSH.

DID YOU KNOW?

- Florida F Tomas Fleischmann played 283 games (2005-10) for Washington, recording 138 points (60-78−138).

THURSDAY'S THROWDOWN

Dec. 18 at Philadelphia (11-13-5)

All-Time Record against Philadelphia 31-42-7-5

All-Time Road Record against Philadelphia: 18-18-6-1

The Panthers and Flyers have faced each other twice this season, each earning a win at their home arenas. The Cats most recent matchup with the Flyers resulted in a 4-1 loss. Florida will head to the City of Brotherly Love for a bit of revenge and edge the Flyers in the final game of their season series.

KNOW YOUR OPPOSITION -- PHILADELPHIA

- C Vincent Lecavalier has posted 72 points (28-44−72) in 83 career games against FLA.

- C Claude Giroux has posted 15 points (6-9−15) in 24 career games against FLA.

- F Jakub Voracek has scored seven points (4-3−7) in 15 career games against FLA.

- G Steve Mason owns a 7-2-0 record with one shutout in nine career games against FLA.

- G Ray Emery owns a 9-3-0 record with one shutout in 12 career games against FLA.

CATS VS. PHILLY

- F Jussi Jokinen has posted 21 points (9-12−21) in 25 career games against PHI.

- F Jonathan Huberdeau has posted five points (3-2−5) in seven career games against PHI.

- F Nick Bjugstad scored his first goal of the season against PHI in their last meeting. Bjugstad has recorded one goal in four career games against PHI.

- D Aaron Ekblad recorded his first NHL goal against PHI on Nov. 1. Ekblad has one goal in two career games against PHI.

- G Roberto Luongo owns a 5-8-2 record with one shutout in 17 career games against PHI.

- G Al Montoya owns a 0-0-1 record in three career games against PHI.

DID YOU KNOW?

- F Scottie Upshall spent three seasons with the Flyers (2006-09) recording 64 points (27-37−64) in 134 games.

- F Jonathan Huberdeau recorded the first four point night (2-2−4) of his career against Philadelphia (2/21/13) . The night included his first career penalty shot goal and his first career game-winning goal.

- Philadelphia assistant coach, Gord Murphy spent six seasons with the Panthers as a player (1993-99) recording 142 points (42-100−142) in 410 games and also spent four seasons as an assistant coach for the Panthers (2010-13). Murphy served as an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets (2002-10), coaching alongside Panthers head coach Gerard Gallant (2000-07).

SATURDAY'S SHOWDOWN

Dec. 20 at Pittsburgh Penguins: 19-6-4

All-Time Record against Pittsburgh: 34-32-4-9

All-Time Road Record against Pittsburgh: 13-16-3-7

Florida heads to the Steel City to take on the Penguins this Saturday in the first game of a home-and-home as the Pens will make a trip to South Florida the following Monday (Dec. 22). The Cats took the season series in 2013-14 (2-1-0) winning the last meeting between the two clubs 5-1 in Pittsburgh.

KNOW YOUR OPPOSITION -- PITTSBURGH

- F Sidney Crosby has recorded 29 points (13-16−19) in 26 career games against FLA.

- F Evgeni Malkin has recorded 26 points (7-19−26) in 25 career games against FLA.

- D Christian Ehrhoff has recorded six points (1-5−6) in 17 career games against FLA.

- G Marc-Andre Fleury owns a 11-8-0 record with one shutout in 20 career games against FLA.

- G Thomas Greiss owns a 0-1-1 record in two career games against FLA.

CATS VS. PENS

- Panthers F Tomas Fleischmann has recorded 20 points (10-10−20) in 23 career games against PIT.

- Panthers F Jussi Jokinen has recorded 17 points (5-12−17) in 19 career games against PIT.

- Panthers F Jonathan Huberdeau has recorded four points (2-2−4) in six career games against PIT.

- G Roberto Luongo owns a 13-8-3 record with four shutouts in 26 career games against PIT.

- G Al Montoya owns a 1-3-1 record in six career games against PIT.

DID YOU KNOW?

- Panthers F Vincent Trocheck is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The game against the Penguins will be his first NHL game in his hometown.

- Panthers F Jussi Jokinen played 91 games for Pittsburgh (2013-14), recording 68 points (28-40−68)

- Panthers GM Dale Tallon played the final season of his career with Pittsburgh (1979-80), playing in 32 games, recording 14 points (5-9−14).

- Penguins F Marcel Goc played 161 games for Florida (2011-14), recording 69 points (31-38-69). Goc scored the Panthers final goal of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs. Goc’s game-tying goal sent game seven of the quarterfinals against the New Jersey Devils into overtime.

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