Apr 27, 2012, 10:52 PM EDT
The Florida Panthers came close to advancing to the second round. They battled into the second overtime period of Game 7, but their season ended on Thursday – or technically early Friday if you are in the Eastern Time Zone – all the same.
“It stings. It stings to lose at home,” Florida’s Stephen Weiss said. “But we’ve got some bright years ahead. We’ve got some kids coming up that are pretty darn good players. So it’ll be a fun summer training, and we’ll try to do it all over again next year.”
What Weiss said is true. The Coyotes might not be regarded as a rebuilding team because Panthers GM Dale Tallon was so aggressive in the 2011 free agent market, but they have a great farm system.
“A successful season is right, a winning season,” Tallon said. “Regardless if we hadn’t gone in the playoffs, we went up 22 points over last year. And you look at my record, we want to get better every year and we exceeded expectations this year. But it doesn’t surprise me knowing the character of these players that we brought in. They really care.”
Florida also has a healthy amount of cap space going into the summer, so Tallon has some flexibility moving forward. It took the Panthers over a decade to get back to the playoffs. They shouldn’t have to wait that long again.
- How do Voracek, Giroux compare to the most expensive duos? 52
- Voracek turns monster season into massive eight-year deal 71
- Report: Canucks, Sutter closing in on five-year deal, north of $20M 28
- Voynov serving sentence at jail that once advertised it had flat screen TVs 45
- Report: Bernier and Leafs more than $2 million apart ahead of Friday’s arbitration hearing 12
- Flyers re-sign Couturier: six years, $26 million 40
- Benning calls Sutter a ‘foundation piece’ for Canucks 24
- Here’s a chart that shows which teams have been good/bad at drafting 42
- Penguins sign Fehr to three-year, $6 million contract 22
- Trade: Penguins send Sutter to Canucks for Bonino, Clendening 54
- Bettman says NHL would have to ‘consider’ putting Quebec City in the Western Conference (71)
- Voracek turns monster season into massive eight-year deal (71)
- Rangers sign Stepan — six years, $39 million (62)
- NBC Sports to broadcast 105 NHL games in 2015-16 (58)
- Trade: Penguins send Sutter to Canucks for Bonino, Clendening (54)