No team is hotter in the East right now than the Panthers. A seven game winning streak was just brought to an end by the Bolts on March 6. And it took overtime to do it. The Panthers did not go away quietly against the team that is possibly the favorite to win the Stanley Cup right now.
While the Panthers are two points back from the Jackets at this moment, they have three games up on them. Florida also has a ton of home games remaining on the slate which should favor them as well. There’s a lot falling their way.
The pieces are really all falling into place for the Panthers with veteran goalie Roberto Luongo healthy and back ready to man the nets. Even backup goalie James Reimer has put together a solid run, and provides some depth between the pipes.
Mainly, all the young offensive talent is powering the Panthers right now. Aleksander Barkov is having a career season as is Jonathan Huberdeau. It’s hard to slow down this time right now, and they’re very likely to power through into the playoffs for the first time in a few years.