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Florida Panthers
Team Page | 2000-2001 Schedule | Roster | 1999-2000 Player Stats
On this page: Comings | Goings | Prospect Watch | Get the Highlighter | Quoteworthy

 
1999-2000 Stat Leaders
Stat  Leader  No. 
Goals  Pavel Bure  58 
Assists  Viktor Kozlov  53 
Points  Pavel Bure  94 
+/-  Pavel Bure  25 
Shots  Pavel Bure  360 
Ice Time (F)  Pavel Bure  24:23 
Ice Time (D)  Robert Svehla  24:32 
Faceoff Pct.  Mike Sillinger  61.29 
Hits  Rob Niedermayer  211 
PP Pts  Ray Whitney  22 
SH Pts  Pavel Bure 
 

There's more to the Panthers than Pavel Bure, but the presence of the Russian Rocket does pretty much mean an almost automatic playoff appearance for Florida. That said, the second season does present some worries. The word "eliminated" doesn't do justice to the suffocation job New Jersey did on Pavel & Co. in the first round.

Thanks in large part to Bure's scoring pace through December 30 (21 goals, 37 points), Florida was 20-13-3 at the end of the 1999 calendar year. The Panthers went 7-1-0 in their next eight games and found themselves among the league's point leaders. But then inconsistency set in, to the tune of 16-19-3 after January 17. The squad's 43-33-6 record and 98 points were more than enough to get into the playoffs, but the Panthers weren't exactly high-octane when the postseason began.

This too, is due in large part to Pavel Bure. For all the good he can do for you on the scoreboard, there are times when he's the Panthers' answer to Allen Iverson. Pavel's game can take a team out of its own game. He turns the puck over. And he doesn't get paid to play defense. Often, Bure's turnovers end up in the back of Florida's net. A 50-goal scorer almost always gets you into the playoffs, but he doesn't guarantee you'll get through them.

For more on the Panthers, bookmark this page and check back Wednesday, Oct. 11 for a Sports Illustrated Scouting Report.

BRIGHT SPOTS   GRAY AREAS
  • Trade of Mark Parrish and Oleg Kvasha does a couple things: clears room for forward prospects, and gives them all-world prospect Roberto Luongo in goal and a big (6' 3", 218) centerman in Olli Jokinen.
  • Coveted prospect Denis Shvidki, a 6'0'' right wing from the Ukraine, may get a shot on a line with Bure.
  • Ray Whitney, a late re-signee, neared the 30-goal mark again this past season and set a career high in points-scored with 71, after seasons of 61, 65 and 64.
  • Panthers tied for third in the league with 244 goals, and as a team, ranked ninth in team goaltending.
  • Maybe those Bure-Kournikova rumors will heat up again.
  •  
  • Igor Larionov was signed to get Bure the puck, but Larionov will turn 41 in December.
  • Mike Vernon's departure leaves Florida with a young Luongo (7-14-1, 3.25 GAA in 1999-2000) and Trevor Kidd to fight for the No. 1 job. Kidd won only one game in his last eight starts after returning from a shoulder injury.
  • Mellanby, 34, isn't getting any younger, but the Panthers aren't relying on his production.
  • Rob Niedermayer is on the verge of enigma status.
  • Panthers defensive corps is not very deep, which may mean rookie Brad Ference gets a regular spot.
  • Bure was benched twice in March last season for costly giveaways that led to Panthers losses.
  • Comings
    Player  Pos.  From  Via 
    Eric Boguniecki  Florida  Re-signed 
    Dany Boyle  Florida  Re-signed 
    Paul Brosseau  LW  Florida  Re-signed 
    Dan Duerden  LW  Florida  Re-signed 
    Igor Larionov  Detroit  Free agent 
    Rob Niedermayer  Florida  Re-signed 
    Joey Tetarenko  Florida  Re-signed 
    Rocky Thompson  RW  Florida  Re-signed 
    Ray Whitney  RW  Florida  Re-signed 
    Roberto Luongo  N.Y. Islanders  Trade 
    Olli Jokinen  N.Y. Islanders  Trade 
     
    Goings
    Player  Pos.  To Via 
    Cam Stewart  LW  Minnesota 
    Mike Vernon  Minnesota 
    Oleg Kvasha  LW  N.Y. Islanders 
    Mark Parrish  RW  N.Y. Islanders 
     
    Prospect Watch
    Ivan Novoseltsev, RW, 6' 1", 213
    Born: Jan. 23, 1979 in Golitsino, U.S.S.R
    Acquired: 1997 entry draft (No. 95 overall)

    The departure of Parrish means another shot for Novoseltsev, who was one of the final cuts before the 1999-00 season. Novoseltsev did get a chance this past season while Bure nursed a groin pull, scoring two power-play goals in his NHL debut. But the former Sarnia Sting would make like Pavel only once. Novoseltsev's final line? Fourteen games, two goals. Two seasons ago in the OHL, Novoseltsev scored 57 goals.

    Get the Highlighter
    Friday, Oct. 6 vs. Vancouver. Big ups to the schedule-makers for this one. On opening night, the Panthers get to say a big thank you to the Canucks for Bure.
    Friday, Nov. 24 at Tampa Bay and Saturday, Nov. 25 vs. Tampa Bay. The Sunshine State's NHL representatives battle it out in this home-and-home.

    Quoteworthy
    "I'm not trying to start a controversy or create a distraction But I feel like it's my job. I don't look at it as a 1A and 1B situation. It's really my ball and if [Luongo] wants it, he'll have to wrestle it away from me."
    —Trevor Kidd

    Team-by-team previews compiled by CNNSI.com's Ken Klavon, Jamie MacDonald and Jimmy Traina.


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