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Florida Panthers Kick Off Final Road Trip in Toronto

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The Florida Panthers celebrate Kevin Stenlund’s first-period goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs on November 28. (Photo by Gavin Napier/Icon Sportswire)

The Florida Panthers have just about two weeks left in their regular season.

Tonight, they kick off the final road trip before the playoffs begin.

Florida’s opponent is a familiar one, and, one whom they may face once the postseason begins.

The Panthers have not faced Toronto since November, but they are about to quickly become reacquainted with the Maple Leafs.

Not only are they in Toronto tonight, but their final regular-season game comes against the Leafs on April 16.

As things stand right now, Florida is the second seed in the Atlantic Division; Toronto is third.

That would mean a first-round matchup in about three weeks.

Florida, one may recall, knocked the Leafs out of the second-round in 5 games last season.

Of course, things can change.

The Panthers remain two points back of the Boston Bruins for the top slot in the Atlantic which would mean a first-round series against one of the two wild card winners.

And, as coach Paul Maurice reasons, that could still be the Maple Leafs.

Toronto has won its past two games but the hard-charging Lightning are still just three points back of the Leafs for third place.

The two teams could swap places in the final weeks of this season.

Which means the Panthers could play Tampa Bay or Toronto — regardless of whether they finish first or second in the Atlantic.

This final road trip of the regular season will be one which will test the Panthers.

Prior to Saturday’s 3-2 shootout win against the Red Wings, Florida has lost six of seven (1-5-1).

Florida will play four games in six days with a game in Montreal on Tuesday.

The Panthers visit Ottawa on Thursday and wrap the trip up with a nationally-televised matinee against the host Bruins on Saturday.

Florida has a four-game homestand to end the regular season.

“We’re going to finish off this 10-game block and it is going to be hard,” Maurice said. “We have another back-to-back. And, we were afforded the opportunity to play another afternoon game at the end of 10 games in 17 days. That’s awesome, looking forward to that.

“Then we’re home for a 10-day block. To rest your team, to get feeling good, you need two days off at home. We’re going to get that twice before the playoffs, and I am pretty excited about that.”

For the most in-depth coverage of the Florida Panthers:

ON DECK

FLORIDA PANTHERS @ TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS

  • When: Monday, 7 p.m.
  • Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports SUN/ESPN+
  • Radio: WPOW 96.5-FM2; WBZT 1230-AM (West Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); WCZR 101.7-FM (Treasure Coast); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932, NHL app
  • This Season (Tied 1-1) — At Florida: Panthers 3, Leafs 1 (Oct. 19); April 16. At Toronto: Leafs 2, Panthers 1 (Nov. 28); Monday.
  • Last Season: Toronto won Regular Season Series 3-1; Florida won Eastern Conference Semifinals 4-1
  • All-time Regular Season Series: Toronto leads 49-37-7, 7 ties
  • Up Next for the Panthers: Tuesday at Montreal, 7 p.m.

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