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FHN Today: Florida Panthers Play Islanders Before Holiday Break

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SUNRISE — The Florida Panthers will be taking off for their Christmas break on Friday night but not before they try and take care of some business on Long Island.

Following Friday night’s game against the New York Islanders, some will fly back to Fort Lauderdale on the team charter while others will head out to other locales.

Matthew Tkachuk, for instance, plans on heading home to St. Louis. Grigori Denisenko is staying in New York.

The Panthers will be off for a few days, returning to practice on Tuesday afternoon with their next game on Thursday against the visiting Montreal Canadiens.

Again, there is business to attend to first.

Thursday afternoon, the team went through a spirited workout — their first full practice on home ice since Nov. 25.

Coach Paul Maurice dug his team’s attitude despite their struggles of late.

“Everyone is going home right after but we need one,” Maurice said. “They liked practicing here today. They have not gone home yet.”

Florida was again without captain Sasha Barkov and he will not play against the Islanders but could be back against the Canadiens.

Radko Gudas took part in the full practice but did not travel to New York. He is expected to be back Thursday.

Sergei Bobrovsky starts again Friday night.

FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW

So, why did Maurice keep Spencer Knight in Monday night’s game against the Bruins?

Knight was obviously rusty and battling the game from the start but Maurice kept him in there against the best team in the NHL.

Maurice explains his reasoning.

— With the Panthers losing five of their past seven and out of the playoff picture right now, fans are seeing red.

Pun intended.

Colby Guy collected some of your hottest takes, grades them on his oh-so-scientific scale and breaks them down in this month’s edition of the Panthers’ Temp Check.

— Before flying off to Missouri, Tkachuk had a little score to settle with Devils’ captain Nico Hischier after he took out Barkov last weekend.

— We have post-practice video from Maurice and Ryan Lomberg up on the FHN YouTube Channel as well as Wednesday’s postgame from the coach, Anton Lundell and Josh Mahura as well.

The Panthers’ video tribute to Andrew Brunette is also on the channel.

Check out all of our FHN videos RIGHT HERE or just click on the videos below and enjoy them whenever you want.

NATIONAL HOCKEY NOW

While the Panthers were adjusting to the temperature drop on Long Island on Thursday night, the New York Islanders were at the Garden losing to the Rangers.

— The Philadelphia Flyers rallied in an afternoon affair against the Leafs but fell to 0-2 this season against Toronto.

— Carolina beat the Pittsburgh Penguins for the third time this season.

— The Detroit Red Wings are not going to Ottawa after all. Early break for the Wings.

— Do the Vegas Golden Knights have enough to swing a deal for Bo Horvat?

PANTHERS ON DECK

FLORIDA PANTHERS AT NEW YORK ISLANDERS

  • When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: UBS Arena; Elmont, N.Y.
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida, ESPN+
  • Radio: WPOW 96.5-FM2; WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932
  • Last season: Florida won 3-0
  • This season (Florida 2-0): Florida 3, Islanders 1 (Oct. 13); Florida 3, Islanders 2 (Oct. 23)
  • All-time regular season series: Panthers lead 56-32-11, 8 ties
  • Next Up for the Panthers: Dec. 29 vs. Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m.

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